“Assume a can opener”, “Can’t opener”, and other jokes
😊 Let’s tickle your funny bone and start the day on a lighthearted note by cracking some jokes about jar and can openers. Some of them will be sophisticated, while others will be downright silly. I plan to add more jokes, video clips, and funny pictures to this post over time.
Assume a Can Opener
Have you ever heard someone say “assume a can opener”? Do you know what this phrase means?
It all started with a joke that was popular in the 1970s and first mentioned in the book Economics as a Science by Kenneth Boulding. I present to you the retelling of the joke by Anatole Kaletsky in his book Capitalism 4.0: The Birth of the New Economy in the Aftermath of Crisis, published in 2010 (p. 156):
“An economist, a chemist and a physicist are marooned on a desert island. Their only food is a can of beans, but they have no can opener. What are they to do? The physicist says, ‘Let’s try and focus the tropical sun onto the lid—it might melt a hole.’ ‘No,’ says the chemist. ‘We should first pour saltwater on the lid—maybe that will rust it.’ The economist interrupts: ‘You’re wasting your time with all these complicated ideas. Let’s just assume a can opener.”
As we can see, the phrase “assume a can opener” originated in economics but later spread to politics and social science to describe oversimplified, distorted, and unrealistic views.
Now you know that “assume a can opener” is equivalent to “unrealistic assumptions.” So, the next time someone oversimplifies a problem in a conversation or debate, just tell them: “Assume a can opener.”
– What do you call a can opener that cannot open a can?
– A can’t opener.
Did you hear about the guy who got hit in the head with a can of soda? He was lucky it was a soft drink!
The can crusher quit his job because it was soda pressing.
A husband and wife had a quarrel, during which the wife exclaimed, “I will never speak to you again!” The husband decided to have a little fun and wait out his wife’s silent treatment. Later that night, when his wife was fast asleep, he snuck into the kitchen and tightened the lids on all the jars that had been previously opened. Chuckling to himself, he thought, “Let’s see how long this silent treatment lasts now!”
(Ladies! In order not to find yourself in such situation get an EZ Off jar opener that will never fail to unscrew tightened lids! Read more here).
When you can’t open a jar after 30 minutes of trying, you start questioning yourself, “Am I really a strong, independent woman who doesn’t need a man?”
My favorite Sesame Street clip about a poor kitty that waited for a can to get opened.
Have you watched the TV series Suits? Then you’ll remember the show’s biggest mystery: the can opener! The writers used a clever trick to grab your attention and keep you intrigued for a few seasons: ‘What do Harvey and Donna do with the can opener?’
Credit for the funny photo picturing a monkey looking at a can of Coke goes to Eirik Skarstein on Unsplash.