Q: What do you get when you take an American expatriate living in Paris and cross him with a suicidal rodent?
A: Ernest Lemmingway

Q: What’s the difference between Bertrand Russell, Mary Shelley, and Alice B. Toklas?
A: One debated Wittgenstein, one created Frankenstein, and one a-bedded Gertrude Stein.

Woman #1: Why did Zelda Fitzgerald cross the road?
Woman #2: To “F” Scott Fitzgerald.
Woman #1: I wouldn’t “F” Scott Fitzgerald, but I Sherwood Anderson.

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Erskine Caldwell.
Erskine Caldwell who?
Erskine called while you were in the bathroom, and you never called him back.

Faulkner? I barely know ‘er!

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NATHAN PENSKY is a recent graduate of the Creative Writing M.F.A. program at Mills College and has been published in McSweeney's Internet Tendency, MONKEYBICYCLE, and many others. He is an Associate Flash Fiction/Fiction Editor for the online literary journal JMWW, and a frequent contributor for the pop culture website PopMatters.

15 responses to “5 Really, Really Lame Jokes About American Modernists”

  1. Gloria says:

    I wouldn’t “F” Scott Fitzgerald, but I Sherwood Anderson. bwahahahah

    You’re a goddamm genius. A really, really nerdy genius.

  2. Thank you, Nathan. I am going to use “Faulkner? I barely know ‘er!” as inappropriately and often as possible, if that’s okay with you. (:

  3. pixy says:

    this is brilliant. definitely golf clap worthy.

  4. Art Edwards says:

    Wonderful. I will annoy my wife with them immediately.

    I’ve always wanted to write about a fictional writer/rock star named Lemmy Hemingway.

  5. Simon Smithson says:

    A ha ha ha ha ha…

    You, sir, should be crowned the King of Thursday.

  6. sheree says:

    Funny Stuff!

  7. James D. Irwin says:

    I love lame jokes.


  8. Darian Arky says:

    If only Gertrude Stein had had a penis, then it could have been fellated…

  9. Dana says:

    Ha –you weren’t kidding Nathan!
    Good stuff.

  10. Greg Olear says:

    [too afraid to make up a joke concerning Gertrude Stein and John Updike]

    Well played, Nathan.

  11. Victoria Patterson says:

    I look forward to your posts! Thanks for the laugh.

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