Joke – German

An Ostfriesen works at a gas station. A German stranger tanks up and asks for directions to the biggest town in the area, Emden. The Ostfriesen scratches his head, says no and the stranger, disappointed, starts driving away. But the stranger glances back in his rearview mirror a few moments later and notices that the Ostfriesen has started talking to another Ostfriesen in a very animated tone and then suddenly the first Ostfriesen begins waving the stranger back to the gas station. Relieved, the stranger backs up slowly and rolls down his window. The first Ostfriesen tells him, “This is my buddy Karsten.” The stranger smiles in expectation. Then the Ostfriesen says, “He doesn’t know the way to Emden, either.”

My informant heard this joke at a party in Germany from a friend of his.  This joke makes fun of Ostfriesen, inhabitants of the island to the north of Germany.  The joke-teller had had a few glasses of champagne before he began to tell Ostfriesen jokes.

My informant says these jokes are often told in bars and at parties by German people who have often times been drinking alcohol.

My informant says East Frisia is not very industrial and is looked down on by Germans.  He says the Ostfriesen are considered country bumpkins who have no culture.  This joke makes fun of a nationality of people.  The Germans believe that the Ostfriesen are uncivilized because the island is mostly based on agriculture rather than technology.  Ostfriesen jokes are very popular in Germany.

This joke is funny because it upholds the stereotype the Germans have for the Ostfriesen people.  Ostfriesen jokes are identical to racist jokes which also use stereotypes as a mode of humor.  Since these jokes are politically incorrect, the repression of Ostfriesen jokes makes them funnier because they are taboo.