Best… joke… ever.

That headline is no joke. This story is about the world’s funniest joke. I was absolutely certain that it was a bait-and-switch kind of a story about the psychology of jokes, but they did not disappoint. Follow the link, and there is a real joke there. As far as being the world’s funniest, I don’t know, but their rationale was: across genders, across many possible cultures, nations, religions, age groups, and languages, which joke, of a given list, ranked the highest? I was sorry to see the winner did not begin with So this guy walks into a bar, and …. But I’m getting ahead of myself. See for yourself. Here’s another related story at CNN.com from partway through the study: Europe’s funniest nation revealed (surprise! it’s Germany). Incidentally, Dave Barry had a good joke on the joke scientists:

The American data proved to be somewhat strange. Dave Barry is a well known humourist whose columns are syndicated in many American newspapers. In January 2002 he kindly devoted an entire column to LaughLab. At the end of the column he urged readers to submit jokes that simply ended with the punch line:
‘There’s a weasel chomping on my privates.’ Within just a few days we had received over 1500 ‘weasel chomping’ jokes.

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