Tag Archives: knock knock joke

Lithuanian Knock Knock Joke (Pun)


Speaker 1: Tuk Tuk

Speaker 2: Kas ten?

Speaker 1: Česnakas 


Speaker 1: Knock Knock 

Speaker 2: Who’s there?

Speaker 1: Garlic


IZ is a 20 year-old college student from Lisle, Illinois, living in Los Angeles, California. Both her parents’ families immigrated to the United States during World War II and remain connected to their Lithuanian roots through strong immigrant communities in the US.

IZ described this joke as a “Lithuanian take on American knock-knock jokes.” The punchline comes as a pun that requires an understanding of Lithuanian. “The ‘who’ is omitted because it’s part of the word for garlic,” IZ explained. “See how ‘kas’ and the end of ‘česnakas’ are the same?”

IZ first encountered this joke at Camp Dainava, a Lithuanian camp in Manchester, Michigan, which she has been attending “ever since I was in my mom’s stomach.” They would often sit around a bonfire — here IZ emphasized the importance of bonfires in Lithuanian culture — and share jokes and skits. For IZ, the camp provided a way to bond with other people of Lithuanian background, and share language, culture, and folklore.

IZ added that the camp was founded by an organization with the aim of helping Lithuania declare independence by getting American international recognition.


This is a classic example of a knock knock joke as it is found in many cultures and languages around the world. It is interesting that IZ sees it as a take on American culture, since, in true folklore fashion, determining the origin of a joke style is more complicated.

It is notable that this joke was shared in a multilingual setting at IZ’s Lithuanian Camp, since it requires knowledge of the language to understand its pun. This type of folklore, as it is shared around the bonfire, would be the most difficult to understand if someone had limited knowledge of the language. Skits and other more performative jokes could be grasped through context, but this one is purely linguistic. Thus it may have served an interesting function of encouraging fluency and establishing a measure of belonging to the cultural group.

Lastly, the context of IZ’s Lithuanian camp and its history provides an interesting example of how institutions can preserve folklore and culture in the interest of nationalism — even outside of the country itself. Further study could examine which immigrant cultures within the United States have the strongest folklore preservation and why.

Knock-Knock Joke with a twist

Background: A traditional American Joke with a prequel to build up the punchline.

Person1: “Why did the chicken cross the road?”
Person2: “I don’t know, why did the chicken cross the road?”
Person1: “To get to the idiot’s house”

Person1: “Knock-Knock!”
Person2: “Who’s there?”
Person1: “The chicken”

Informant: This is a cruel joke that I was the unfortunate victim of in my youth.

Analysis: As a non-American, this is the first knock-knock joke that I found funny. Knock-knock jokes are usually meant for children and the informant confirmed that they heard about this from their elementary school friend when they were young

Interrupting Cow


Interviewee: Knock Knock

Me: Who’s there?

Interviewee: Interrupting cow.

Me: Interrupting cow-

Interviewee: Moo!

Relationship to Subject:

The subject learned this joke when they were young from their uncle Larry. This was the first knock knock joke they ever learned and because it was from their funny uncle Larry, they thought it was very cool. After she heard it, she introduced it to their middle school and the joke became popular. She thinks its funny because the person hearing the joke does not expect to be interrupted. It is also interactive and lets the person telling the joke and the one hearing it take part in the process.


This joke is tailored more for a young audience and yet I couldn’t help but giggle. The subject seemed very happy and joyful when telling the background of their experience with the joke and how it relates to their family and childhood. The joke is obviously very simple, but it still made both me and the subject laugh. After the joke was told, the subject just told me about their childhood and it was a fun time.

The reason this joke works is obviously because it adds a new layer to the conventional knock knock joke and surprises the person hearing it because they are unable to complete the process they expected to be taking part in. They get interrupted by none other than the “interrupting cow” introduced earlier.

“Interrupting Cow”: Knock Knock joke

Original text:

Informant: “Knock knock.”

Collector: “Who’s there?”

Informant: “Interrupting cow.”

Collector: “Interrupting cow who–”

Informant: “MOOOO!”

Context: The informant is 18 and a freshman at USC studying Theater and Anthropology. They learned this joke while on the bus in elementary school. They exchanged this joke with their friends at school, getting laughs on either side with this unconventional delivery of the classic “Knock Knock” joke. They state that “recess, lunch, or in between class time” was the perfect stage for this joke. 

Analysis: The informant is a white American that went to public school in Barrington, Illinois. Among jokes that are popular with young American children, “Knock Knock” jokes are definitely one of the top choices. The format is one that almost every kid knows, and it goes a little something like this: the joke teller says “Knock knock”, the listener responds “Who’s there”, the teller says “x” (any word or phrase), in response the listener says “x who?”, and the teller tells the punch line. This variation of the “knock knock” joke is interesting because it doesn’t follow the typical pattern: the teller interrupts the listener mid-sentence as the punchline. The phrase “interrupting cow” is already humorous and familiar to young children because of the emphasis placed on learning the names of animals in elementary schools. Children also memorize the sounds that each animal makes very early on, making the punchline of “MOOOOO!” relatable and funny. Many families in the rural American Midwest own farms with cows, which also might bring an extra sense of familiarity to the children in the general semi-rural area of Barrington, Illinois.

“Orange you glad I didn’t say banana?”: Knock Knock joke

Original Text:

Informant: “Knock knock.”

Collector: “Who’s there?”

Informant: “Banana.”

Collector: “Banana who?”

Informant: “Banana.”

Collector: “Banana who?”

Informant: “Orange”

Collector: “Orange who?”

Informant: “Orange you glad I didn’t say banana again?” 

Context: The informant is 18 and a freshman at USC studying Theater and Anthropology. They state that they “learned this on the bus in elementary school”. They would use it to prank their friends and get a good laugh while in between school activities or on the playground. The informant even laughed while telling the joke to me in this current day. 

Analysis: The informant is a white American that went to public school in Barrington, Illinois. Knock Knock jokes are popular in America, specifically with younger children. The typical format goes as follows. The joke teller begins by saying, “Knock knock”, to which the listener responds “Who’s there”. The teller can then say “x” (any word or phrase), and in response, the listener says “x who?”. The teller then delivers the punch line. However, this particular joke is a bit of a trick joke, designed to stump the listener as to why the joke teller keeps saying “banana”. The phrase “Knock Knock” refers to knocking on the door of one’s home, announcing your presence. The practice of knocking is common, but not wholly universal. This joke reveals one proper way to announce your presence in America, as well as the ideal of privacy. The fruits mentioned in the joke (bananas, oranges) are common in American public school lunches, as well as being cultivated often in the Americas.