The 4 Most Overused Jokes It's Time to Stop Making
Whether it's on late-night TV or overheard out in the world, there are go-to jokes people vomit up as their default attempt at making a witty observation. These jokes have entered the public domain and people use them over and over and over and over and, yet again, over, because that's the only response they know to a particular situation. We've all heard these bland, cliche jokes repeated so often in so many places that we just accept them. They're easy targets.
Well, it's about time we retired these lame jokes and shipped them off to a hospice so they can die in peace after years of overuse. Their time is done.
Taco Bell Gives People Diarrhea
On the subject of your ass being ripped apart by the geyser of liquid shit rocketing out of you mere moments after sinking your teeth into anything from Taco Bell, I have to call bullshit. There is nothing inherent within Taco Bell's food that will flip your rectum inside-out. It's a joke on an incredibly easy target, and there are two reasons it exists: 1) Mexican food can make you gassy because of all the protein, fiber, and spiciness, and 2) the low quality of fast food. Jam those together and you've got an infinitely reliable poop joke.
I couldn't find a picture of the infinity symbol made of turds, so use this as a template as you imagine it.
If since birth you've eaten nothing but unsalted crackers and chicken broth like you're always 24 hours away from a colonoscopy, then yes, Taco Bell may cause you to explode. Taco Bell doesn't serve engine parts wrapped in shoe leather -- you should be able to digest something as basic as beans and cheese without being crippled into the fetal position on your bathroom floor as bursts of poop spray out of you. A burrito is not a big deal.
Not Taco Bell.
Yeah, you might be a little gassy afterward, but if you get diarrhea after eating Taco Bell and it's not related to food poisoning, you probably aren't long for this world. A taco destroyed your body and now your insides are melting. A goddamned taco. If the old "Taco Bell gives me the shits" joke perfectly describes you, you are weak. It's not a healthy meal, but it's not like they're getting their meats and cheeses out of another restaurant's hot dumpster. Their weird, corporatized Tex-Mex-style cuisine is fine. It's you -- the joke is on you and your piss-poor constitution. Much like Dorothy could always get home from Oz even without her special shoes, you need to recognize that the diarrhea was inside you the whole time.
The Wait at the DMV
For our international readers, the Department of Motor Vehicles is where we Americans go to take our driving test when we're 16 so we can get our driver's license and then legally drive like an asshole until we die from it. It's famous for being a bit of a nightmare. Lots of bureaucracy, lots of waiting, lots of moving from one line to another. The DMV has been a cornerstone of American humor since the first comedian went to the local DMV and had the same mildly unpleasant experience as everyone else.
"Two! I've killed two people since I got this thing!"
The problem with the comedic referencing of the DMV isn't that it's wildly incorrect -- the place can and will occasionally suck. The problem is that no one ever goes to the DMV enough for it to make a significant impact on their lives. I went to the DMV when I was 16 to take my driver's test and I've never been back. Every issue with my driver's license that's cropped up has been handled through the Internet since 2002. Unless you're a vehicular sociopath and getting your license revoked and reinstated is somehow a regular occurrence for you, the wait at the DMV should be a minor blip. It's a persistent reference point based on a place most people in America visit, at absolute most, a handful of times throughout their entire lives. And one of those happens to be one of the best days of anyone's life: the day they earn a card that legally allows them to drive a car.
"Still pretty happy about those two people I killed!"
Now, let's get numerical: The national average for DMV wait time is 34.2 minutes. Compare that to the average national wait time in a doctor's office (which will have way less people walking through every day because there are tons of doctor's offices in a city, or even a neighborhood), which is 20.2 minutes. Considering every weirdo and their weirdo friend who lives within 10 miles of your local DMV is at your DMV the same day as you, 34.2 minutes isn't bad.
Jokes about the DMV suck not just because they're hacky, but statistically as well.
Pretty Much Anything Casting "Nerds" in a Negative Light
Three of the top 10 highest grossing movies of 2014 as of the publishing date of this article are based on comic books (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2). Two of the 10 are based on a line of toys (Transformers: Age of Extinction and The LEGO Movie). Two are remakes/reboots of classic sci-fi films (Godzilla and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes).
What a piece of shit this one was.
On TV, the highest rated program that isn't a live sports broadcast is The Big Bang Theory, a comedy about astrophysicists and engineers. In the top 10 list of most pirated shows, you have Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Arrow -- one fantasy series and two comic book properties.
And then there's the economic impact of traditionally nerdy pursuits, like all things tech-related. Let's look at it through the prism of a crazy billionaire in California named Tim Draper, who wants to rip California apart and split it into six separate states. If this insane idea were to somehow happen, Silicon Valley -- the part of California that companies like Apple, Google, Cisco, Oracle, Adobe, Facebook, Yahoo!, Netflix, and Pixar call home -- would instantly become the wealthiest state in the country, with an average yearly income of $63,288.
Tim Draper, seen here wearing his most evil set of eyebrows.
Nerd culture, geek culture -- however you want to define it -- reigns supreme. Nerdy people no longer exist so low on the totem pole of life that people can take pot shots at them that they'll never be able to return. They're above it all, running all the shit, and only getting more powerful. So the next time you see someone you know or someone on TV make a joke about nerd culture, maybe one that plays into the stereotype of the antisocial virgin without a job who lives in their parents' basement and plays D&D, understand that legions of that same person are the reason any of us have access to all of the astounding movies, shows, phones, video games, and apps we use every day. They've crawled out of the basements, and now they live in mansions. The joke is played out; the nerds have won.
IKEA Furniture Is Difficult to Assemble
This is another favorite of pretty much every single late-night host. For some reason, IKEA's products have become an infinitely repeatable joke, and it's not just because the names of their products looks like demon-speak.
"This maleficent spawn of the Dark Lord doubles as a stylish ottoman!"
Apparently their stuff is hard to put together. The process is confusing, the instructions are all, like, weird and stuff, and like ... it's just hard. So hard. No, it's not. I'm going to go ahead and say, definitively, that IKEA products are in no way difficult to assemble. At all. IKEA instruction guides are the most insultingly simplistic instructions humans have ever created, and somehow people still use IKEA as a punchline for their own failure to connect one thing to another thing to form a whole thing.
IKEA has all their product assembly instruction guides on their website for safekeeping in the event that a needlessly frustrated person throws the paper instructions that came with their bookshelf into a fire. None of the guides are explicitly detailed with complexly written chunks of text telling people to "align Screw Slot B into Junction F with the willy-wally driver and screw-dazzler while ensuring that the Roto-Slant Hooker Device has been securely fastened with 1/8" Screws #1-17 in their corresponding Screw Slots on the opposing end of the Perineum Hinge." They're made up entirely of pictures. IKEA's instruction guides have all the complexity of a coloring book:
They don't even use words to tell you that you can call them if you get confused on how to assemble something:
They'll laugh at you in Swedish.
The most complicated it gets is when they add in a circular arrow telling you which way to spin the screwdriver because they assume you think the helpful rhyme "lefty loosey, righty tighty" has something to do with masturbatory grip strength.
The joke would be fine if it were in any way rooted in reality. Maybe at some point in the past an IKEA product was just a bunch of atoms in a box and people had to start off the assembly of their side table from an atomic level. If that's the way it used to be, it's not anymore. The joke should be put to rest, preferably in a Flarve, an easy-to-assemble coffin for jokes that retails for $79.99 at IKEA.