An American is in the kitchen.

What do you call him in the bathroom?


Emilie told this riddle at dinner one night at Parkside Cafeteria in front of a group of friends.  It was a relaxing night where everyone was swapping jokes at the dinner table.  Emilie says that she first heard this riddle during elementary school, on the playground during recess.  She said this was a popular riddle that a lot of the school children sang.

Emilie’s riddle is a play on words and can be classified as an oppositional riddle.  “European” sounds like “you are peeing”, which is what one does in the bathroom.  I believe that this riddle is the result of childish antics because children find humor with bodily functions.  In addition, elementary school is when the children are learning new vocabulary and experimenting with words.  Furthermore, although neither Emilie nor I know when this riddle was invented, there could have possibly been Anti-European sentiment at the time the riddle was created.  This riddle associates Europeans with bathrooms, which usually carries a negative connotation.