July 20, 2007

Jokes! 2

Time for answers to jokes from the last post. I've included translation and explanation. Even though the joke doesn't work in translation, it can help us learners to understand how the humor works:

Q: มีคนไทยอยู่สองร้อยคน คนไหนเป็นคนอีสาน
There are two hundred Thai people. Which one is from the Northeast?
A: คนร้อยเอ็ด
The person from Roi-Et./The 101st person.
Comments: The province Roi-Et in Northeastern Thailand (aka Isaan) literally can be translated as "One hundred and one." I'm not sure how the province got its name, so I don't know if that's a correct translation or not, though. I've always wondered. This is also the province that Thais from Isaan jokingly refer to as L.A. (which is a play on the initials of Roi-Et when pronounced colloquially as ล้อยเอ็ด, hence ล.อ., Thailand's L.A.)

Q: มีแก้วสิบใบเต็มไปด้วยน้ำ แก้วใบไหนมีน้ำน้อยที่สุด
There are ten glasses filled with water. Which glass has the least water?
A: แก้วใบที่หก
The sixth glass./The spilled glass.
Comments: This is a pretty straightforward play on the word หก, which has two meanings in Thai: six and spill.

Q: เดือนแรกมีบ้าน เดือนที่สองมีรถ เดือนที่สามมีอะไร
The first month you have a house. The second month you have a car. What do you have the third month?
A: มีนาคม
Comments: This one's a bit more complicated. It's a play on the fact that the first syllable of the word "March" in Thai is the same as the word "have" มีั. It sets the listener up to expect มี+noun, but the joke is that March is the third month.

Q: มีสิบคนยืนบนหน้าผา คนที่เท่าไรตกหน้าผาตาย
Ten people are standing on a cliff. Which person fell off the cliff?
A: คนที่เก้า
The ninth person./The person who took a step forward.
Comments: This joke is best told aloud, since it involves two homonyms that are not homographs. Say what? Two words that sound alike but are written differently, ala their/there in English. The word for "nine" is เก้า, the word meaning "take a step" is ก้าว, but they are both pronounced with a long vowel. So it's also a play on the dual meaning of ที่. In this case, ที่เก้า means "ninth," while ที่ก้าว means "who took a step forward." In the first case it's a noun marking the ordinal numbers (ที่หนึ่ง 1st ที่สอง 2nd, etc.); in the second case it's a relative pronoun following the noun and preceding the verb. (This is also the case with the spilled glass joke.)

A few new ones:

Q: นกแก้วกับนกขุนทองเกาะอยู่ที่ไหน

Q: น้ำอะไรเอ่ยผู้ชายไม่ชอบ

Q: ล้างจานยังไงมือไม่เปียก

Q: อะไรเอ่ยยิ่งใหญ่ยิ่งขนเยอะ

Have fun. :)

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