The Funniest Joke I’ve Ever Heard

Who knows why one particular joke makes you laugh more than another? This is not my favorite joke, not by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I hate it. And yet when it was told to me, I laughed harder than I’ve ever laughed at the standard variety of guy-walks-into-a-bar, setup-punchline joke. It’s lousy, but it did it to me. Maybe it’s all in the performance of the telling; maybe it won’t work in writing. In any case, here it is…

This young woman is at the supermarket checkout, and a young man scans her groceries. Microwave dinners for one, single-serving snack packs, a paperback romance novel.

He smiles at her; “Let me guess — you’re single, right?”

She blushes, and smiles. “Yeah,” she answers, looking down at her groceries. “How could you tell?”

“Because you’re fucking ugly.”

UPDATE 1/15/2013! I was just having drinks with some people and we got to telling “jokes” (old-school, setup/punchline, storytelling JOKES) and I seized on the chance to experiment with telling this joke with the genders reversed. Checkout girl, customer boy, with her telling him “Because you’re fucking ugly.” For a joke that’s predicated on humiliating a woman, the gender-swapped variation got big laughs!