What do you call a cow with no legs? (Pause) Ground beef.
What do you call a cow with three legs? (Pause) Lean beef.
What do you call a cow with two legs? (Extra long pause) Your mom.
AL – I like to collect jokes, specifically puns, on various topics so that no matter what situation I am currently in, I can say, “Oh, I know a joke about that!” I have found that most people have a love/hate relationship with puns; they tend to love telling them and hate hearing them. I mostly tell puns to family and friends, and their anger and frustration fuels me. Though my friends groan and sigh every time they hear a pun, they will still send me any good ones that they find. I also find puns on various social media platforms, in books, and on the occasional popsicle stick. Any time that I find or am sent a pun that I like, I write it in a book that I keep specifically for this purpose. My very favorite kinds of puns are the ones that are long and drawn out, ones that are a paragraph, maybe two, and you get to the end and the last line is a clever pun that uses many elements of the story that came before it. My second favorite kinds of puns are the short rude/dirty ones, because in addition to the reaction you get for any other pun, you also get the shock reaction from the vulgarity. I save the more risqué puns for close friends, as I don’t want to offend the delicate sensibilities of people that I don’t know very well.
The three jokes must be told together. The first two are just generally in the category of “bad” jokes meant to get the listener to roll their eyes. Then there is a third joke, completing the rule of thirds, where two similar jokes feels like an unfinished trio, and four feels like too many. This third joke must be told last, because, as the rule of thirds often signifies, something unexpected happens in the third occurrence. The extra long pause the informant adds between the set-up and the punchline amplifies this expectation. The third joke is expected to be another eye-rolling joke, but it turns out to bring the trilogy into the genre of “your mom” jokes.