Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Mal Partridge Theory of Joke-Telling

...And NOT the Mal Partridge Theory of Telling Jokes

[Note that this appeared some years ago on my website, and I've moved it here as part of a clean-up. Apologies Mal.]

Mr. Malcolm James Partridge is a little-known Australian philosopher (remember Rule Number One?) and he has formulated a theory of joke-telling which has received some degree of fame. Sadly, this hasn't yet hit the internet. Until now.

Since Malcolm is a good friend of mine, I have taken the liberty of debuting his theory and its corollary on the internet. It is high time.


A joke will get funnier and funnier in the retelling to a male, in an inverse proportion to the amount it gets funnier to a female. For example, a retold joke that doubles in apparent funniness to a bloke, will be exactly half as funny when retold to a woman. This applies if and only if the joke increases in apparent funniness to men. Said joke is referred to as a joke of funniness potential increasing (FPI). FPI need not be linear. There is no corresponding funniness potential decreasing.


There is a corollary that states that a retold joke of FPI can be contracted with each retelling, so that the whole joke can be represented by a paragraph, a sentence, a phrase, and in extreme cases, by a single word, with the same results as if the whole joke were told.