Bryan Caplan

You Might Be An Economist If You Laugh At These Jokes

Did Literalism Saved the World... Fortune Favors the Bold; Marke...

In fact, if you don't laugh at these jokes, I wonder whether you're really one of us.

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COMMENTS (8 to date)
Matt H writes:

I've starting using economics, with a nod to Bastiat, in pick-up lines. Something like this: "If you like guys who notice the little things, you can't beat an economist. We see the unseen." It didn't work as well as I'd hoped.

Acad Ronin writes:

You might be an econ if you refer to your children as "luxury consumption goods" and point out that the opportunity cost of their college tuition is at least a Jag.

Troy Camplin writes:

Here's my personal favorite (due to its being true in my case):"'ve spent your whole career at a university or other public sector job talking about how great the private sector is." And here all this time I thought I was an interdisciplinary scholar! (which may also explain why I'm at a university, since nobody seems to know what that is or what to do with it.)

dearieme writes:

A prospective employer once said to me "I'll double you pay". I must have looked surprised. He asked "How much are you paid?" I told him. "Christ, that's pathetic" he said, "I'll treble your pay." You'll observe that I didn't actually negotiate at all.

champthom writes:

The last joke with the "can opener" bit is one I also heard from one of my professors. However, I've heard it a long time ago except instead of an economist, it was a mathematician and instead of a deserted island, it was about a case of the old fashion beer without tabs to open the can.

It works either way, actually, with equally humorous results.

TGGP writes:

The best mathematician joke involves a spherical cow.

John writes:

You might be an economist if you divide your relatives into two columns -- assets and liabilities.

I've always liked the version of the can joke where it was a physicist, a chemical engineer, and a mathematician who were each locked in individual boxes for a month to see how they solved the problem of cans but no can opener.

When the physicist's box was opened, he demonstrated that if you throw the can just so into the corner, it will pop open.

When the chemical engineer's box was opened, they discovered that he had somehow improvised an explosive, blown off the back of the box, and escaped.

When the mathematician's box was opened, he was dead. Scrawled on the wall, they found his final words - "Hypothesis: If I cannot open these cans, I will die. Proof: Assume the opposite."

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