Example: [Collected on the Internet, 1997]
Origins: Told as a true story, this joke first appeared on the Internet in June 1996. It has since been reported as a bit of online lore in various newspapers — never exactly as a news story, but rather as a cute tale currently making the rounds.
Consider the following example, told as a joke, not as a "this really happened" story:
So Pincus broke into a run, and he ran and he ran until he thought his heart would plotz.
"Stop! Stop!" cried the policeman, who finally caught up. "Jew!" he roared. "Show me your papers."
The gasping Pincus produced his papers.
The Nazi examined them and saw they were in order. "But why did you run away?"
"Eh — my doctor told me to run half a mile after each meal!"
"But you saw me chasing after you and yelling! Why didn't you stop?"
"I thought maybe you go to the same doctor."1
Immediately, one of the boys threw his rod down and started running through the woods, and hot on his heels came the Game Warden.
After about a half mile the young man stopped and stooped over with his hands on his thighs to catch his breath and the Game Warden finally caught up to him.
"Let's see yer fishin' license, boy!" the Warden gasped.
With that, the fella pulled out his wallet and gave the Game Warden a valid fishing license.
"Well, son," said the Game Warden, "you must be about as dumb as a box of rocks! You don't have to run from me if you have a valid license!"
"Yes, sir," replied the young feller, "But my friend back there, well, he don't have
True or not, the story is popular because there is something about the wily drunks outwitting the constabulary that strikes a chord with people. We enjoy a love/hate relationship with the police; we want them to bring criminals to justice and work to keep us safe from harm, but we equally resent their interference in our lives. They should be out arresting Bad Guys, we think, not hassling us about going a paltry
An interesting point was made in a letter to the editor after The New York Times presented this joke:
Barbara "paradise sot" Mikkelson
Last updated: 31 March 2011
Macey, John. "Drunken Driving Is No Joke." The New York Times. 21 July 1996 (p. C34). 1. Rosten, Leo. The Joys of Yiddish. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1968. ISBN 0-743-40651-6 (pp. 292-293). Van Gelder, Lawrence. "On the Job: The Office As Comedy Club." The New York Times. 7 July 1996 (p. C8). Vittachi, Nury. "Hands Up for Handover Joint Ventures." South China Morning Post. 12 May 1997 (p. 12).
Also told in:
Schroeder, Andreas. Scams, Scandals, and Skulduggery. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1996. ISBN 0-7710-7952-4 (pp. 173-177).