They are flooding the internet as of late, and people both love them and hate them. They are the dreaded yet often shared “dad jokes.” While most people associate them with the personal intricacies of family life, they often share their favorite dad jokes with the online universe.
Look on any social platform, and you’ll see content and even a hash tag that links to the phrase, “dad jokes.” So why do people love dad jokes, yet hate them at the same time? Read on to find out more.
Dad Jokes Mean No Harm
According to Stanley Dubinsky, a University of South Carolina English professor and father of two, “As kids get older and less childlike, he says, there’s a sense of loss and nostalgia that sets in for when they were smaller. You don’t have children anymore,” he says. “One way to get back to that time is to go back to the stupid old jokes they used to think were funny.”
Four Universal Favorites
Dad jokes can teach a lesson and break the tension. Here are some of the most common dad joke groaners circulating the web:
“Hi, hungry! I’m Dad!”
You aren’t being obnoxious! You’re teaching your kids how to communicate assertively. Saying “I’m hungry” and expecting someone to do something about it is passive. The sooner they grow out of that, the sooner they will be able to healthily, effectively and respectfully ask for what they want.
“Do you want your milk in a bag? No! Leave it in the carton!”
Sure, the cashier might roll her eyes at you, but you just taught your kids an important lesson: looking like a fool in public is totally okay. Feigning a misunderstanding in order to laugh at yourself teaches kids that confidence has nothing to do with arrogance and that humor has nothing to do with being mean. At least that’s what they’ll get out of it once they’re done groaning into their hands.
“Did you know the first French fries weren’t actually cooked in France? They were cooked in Greece.”
Wordplay is one of the easiest ways to naturally teach your kids about homonyms and homophones. You’ll send your kids scrambling to Google to figure out just what the heck you’re talking about. That extra step will make your dad jokes even funnier in the end and cement the concept in their heads. You’re a teacher and a comedian, too.
“To call the whole Elon Musk controversy, “Elon-Gate seems like a bit of a stretch.”
This is stealth parenting at it’s finest. Sure, you’ve done the wordplay, you’ve got your homonyms in there. And you’ve also just told your teenagers that you know more than they think you do. Their dad’s gotten way smarter since they were young, and you’re not as out-of-touch as they may think. You’re hip with the kids and their radical slanguage, right? Right.
Dubinsky says this about jokes from dads: Their appeal could be rooted in the desire to take a momentary break from an increasingly stressful environment, especially online. The political climate and the polarization of discourse, on social media and elsewhere, have disrupted the way we talk to each other. We live in an age of a new nastiness.”
Your kids may groan at your dad jokes, but they may like them more than you think they do. So, let loose with the humor and see how it changes the entire mood at the moment.