(and wastewater jokes. …broadly defined)
An episode of The Outfall podcast discusses this page. Check it out at https://theoutfall.com/short/misdirection-and-surprise/
Teacher: “What’s the chemical formula for water?”
Teacher: “What are you talking about?
Student: “Yesterday you said it’s H to O.”
(Submitted by Amy Anderson, January 2022)
Writing an Ice Joke
My brother-in-law says he’s been working on a joke for a couple years now and it has to do with water. It all started with a punch line that came to him. He thought he had it all worked out and tried it with a friend. It starts with an ice cube. But he messed up the delivery and ruined it. He figures it wasn’t very well thawed out.
(Text from brother-in-law Phil Nibley, November 2021)
I Eat Mop
I eat mop.
I eat mop who?
Someone asked me to name two structures that hold water. I was like, “well,… damn!”
(Email from Joseph Loebsack, student in EES 3030, Drinking Water Treatment, Fall 2021.)
You know I love water jokes. Wastewater jokes aren’t my absolute favorite, but they’re a solid #2.
(Adapted from https://energenecs.com/jokes/)
How do you know butane is less dense than water?
It’s a lighter fluid.
(In a text from my brother, Bryan Ladner.)
The only difference between Shamu and shampoo is u and poo.
(A David A. Ladner original; one of the few, but proud.)
How did the ship’s crew explain their risky decision to leap from a burning vessel into a shallow, shark-infested bay?
“We figured the barque was worse than the bight.”
(From Alan Raflo at the Virginia Water Resources Research Center. Check out his podcast episode on water jokes.)
What does Santa Claus use to water his vegetable garden for his reindeer?
Hose, hose, hose.
(Submitted by Allison McLane in answer to a bonus question on the final exam for EES 8020 Environmental Engineering Principles, Fall 2020.)
What did the rain drop feel when it hit the window?
(Submitted by Abi Roberts in answer to a bonus question on the final exam for EES 8020 Environmental Engineering Principles, Fall 2020.)
What is drinking water’s favorite form of dance?
(Adapted from Lingyun Peng’s answer to a bonus question on the final exam for EES 8020 Environmental Engineering Principles, Fall 2020.)
What’s the most sarcastic body of water on earth?
The Crimea River.
(Submitted by Bryanna Wattier in answer to a bonus question on the final exam for EES 8020 Environmental Engineering Principles, Fall 2020.)
The police arrested a water bottle. It was wanted in three different states.
Liquid, solid, and gas.
(Submitted by Bryanna Wattier in answer to a bonus question on the final exam for EES 8020 Environmental Engineering Principles, Fall 2020.)
The other day I opened my water bill and my electricity bill at the same time.
I was shocked!
Would you like to hear a solid water joke?
(Told during our virtual graduation ceremony, May 8, 2020, by Pearse Zbinden, Clemson Environmental Engineering bachelor’s graduate, Class of 2020).
Have you heard the joke about dehydration?
No? That’s right. There’s nothing funny about dehydration.
(From the movie Wonder Park)
Before last quiz of the semester, I was chatting with all the students in my Water and Wastewater Lab class and told them I didn’t have any jokes to share. I asked if anyone had heard something worth telling. One student, Abel Ferry, said, “Sorry Dr. Ladner, I’m all dried up.”
Did you hear about the ocean and the beach having a baby? It was a buoy.
(Told right before a quiz in EES 3050, Water and Wastewater Lab, Fall 2019, by student Dan Thomas)
Passengers on a small commuter plane were waiting for the flight to leave. They were getting a little impatient, but the airport staff assured them that the pilots would be there soon.
Finally, two men dressed in pilot uniforms walked up the aisle. Both wore dark glasses, one was using a seeing-eye dog, and the other was tapping his way up the aisle with a cane. Nervous laughter spread through the cabin but the men entered the cockpit, closed the door, and started up the engines.
The passengers glanced nervously around, searching for some sign that this was just a little practical joke. None was forthcoming. The plane moved faster and faster down the runway, and the people at the windows realized that they were headed straight for the water at the edge of the airport.
As people see the water approaching, panicked screams filled the cabin, but at that moment the plane lifted smoothly into the air. The passengers relaxed and laughed a little sheepishly, and soon they all retreated into their magazines, secure in the knowledge that the plane was in good hands.
In the cockpit, the pilot turned to the co-pilot and said, “You know, Bob, one of these days, they’re gonna scream too late, and we’re all gonna die!”
A man in Florida owned a large farm with a pond in the back. It was a good swimming spot, so he fixed it up nice with a deck, lawn chairs, picnic tables, and some orange and lime trees.
One evening the farmer decided to go down to the pond, as he hadn’t been there for a while, and look it over. He grabbed a five-gallon bucket to bring back some fruit. As he neared the pond, he heard voices shouting and laughing and having fun. As he came closer, he saw it was a bunch of young women skinny-dipping in his pond.
He made the women aware of his presence, and they all went to the deep end. One of the women shouted to him, “We’re not coming out until you leave!” The farmer frowned, “I didn’t come down here to watch you ladies swim naked or make you get out of the pond naked.”
Holding the bucket up he said, “I’m here to feed the alligator.”
(Adapted from the Car Talk website, courtesy of Jimmee Jayson)
Why do sharks swim in salt water?
Because pepper makes them sneeze.
(Told in EES 3030, Drinking Water Treatment, Fall 2019, by Danielle Larsen)
Why did the Norwegians put bar codes on the side of their naval ships?
So they could Scandanavian! (Scan-da-navy-in)
(Submitted by Rachel Thomas, a 2015 graduate of Clemson’s Environmental Engineering bachelor’s program)
Hose and Rabbit
What do you get when you cross a rabbit with a water hose?
(Shared by Paige Taber)
A teenage boy tells his father, “Dad, there’s trouble with the car, it has water in the carburetor.” The father looks confused and says, “Water in the carburetor, that’s ridiculous!” But the son insists. “I tell you, the car has water in the carburetor.”
His father, starting to get a little nervous, says “You don’t even know what a carburetor is…. but I will check it out. Where is the car?”
“It’s in the pool.”
(From Car Talk website, credited to Maura Hayes,)
My friend can’t afford to pay his water bill anymore, so I sent him a card, “Get well soon.”
Bears and Rain
What kind of bear enjoys hanging out in light rain?
A drizzly bear.
Seen on a tombstone: So long, Boiled Water. You will be mist.
In recent news there has been a string of thefts at police stations around the city. The burglars have stolen dozens of toilets. It’s a mystery who is behind these thefts. The investigators have nothing to go on.
Prawns, Cod, and Sharks
In the shark-infested waters of the Caribbean, two prawns called Justin and Christian are discussing the pressures of being a preyed-upon prawn. “I hate being a prawn,” says Justin. “I wish I were a shark.” Suddenly, a mysterious cod appears. “Your wish is granted,” he says. Instantly, Justin becomes a shark. Horrified, Christian swims away, afraid his former friend might eat him. As time passes, Christian continues to avoid Justin, leaving the shrimp-turned-maneater lonely and frustrated. So when he bumps into the cod again, he begs the mysterious fish to change him back. Lo and behold, Justin is turned back into a prawn. With tears of joy in his tiny little eyes, he swims back to the reef to seek out Christian. As he approaches, he shouts out: “It’s me, Justin, your old friend. I’ve changed… I’ve found Cod. I’m a prawn again, Christian.”
(Shared by Chandler Peterson)
How can you tell the gender of an ant?
If you throw it in water and it sinks, it’s a girl ant. If it floats it’s a buoyant.
(Submitted as a bonus question on an exam by Dillon Thompson)
My dog Lassie once spent an hour trying to explain to me that Timmy had fallen down a deep cylindrical hole full of water.
It’s okay. I knew she meant well.
(Submitted as a bonus question on an exam by Matthew Burris)
A mathematician and a physicist were asked the following question: Suppose you walked by a burning house and saw a hydrant and a hose not connected to the hydrant. What would you do?
Physicist: I would attach the hose to the hydrant, turn on the water, and put out the fire.
Mathematician: I would attach the hose to the hydrant, turn on the water, and put out the fire.
Then they were asked this question: Suppose you walked by a house and saw a hose connected to a hydrant. What would you do?
Physicist: I would keep walking, as there is no problem to solve.
Mathematician: I would disconnect the hose from the hydrant and set the house on fire, reducing the problem to a previously solved form.
A guy was visiting his brother for lunch. He looked at his plate and asked his brother, “Are these plates clean?” The brother said, “They’re as clean as Cold Water can get them.” Later for dinner it was similar. “Are you sure these plates are clean?” “Like I said, clean as Cold Water can get them.” Later they were headed to town and went out the front door. The brother tripped over his dog lying in front of the door and said, “Get out of the way, Cold Water!”
You all know the chemical formula for water, H2O. What is H2O2? Hydrogen peroxide, which is not very stable, but is highly reactive. What is H2O3? It doesn’t exist. The electronic structures around hydrogen and oxygen don’t allow this molecule to form and be stable. So what is H2O4? Drinking, bathing, swimming, etc.
Where do bacteria go to resolve their disputes?
The settling chamber.
What did one ocean say to the other ocean?
Nothing, it just waved.
Two men contracted to paint a small community church. Being very frugal (cheap), they pinched and scraped to spend the absolute minimum on materials. Then, when they were only partway through the job, they realized they didn’t have enough paint to finish. They decided they would just dilute the water-based paint they were using so that it would last longer. The painters had just about gotten to the top of the steeple, when, all of a sudden, the sky darkened, and the rain started to pour down. As the paint streamed down the sides of the church, a voice boomed from the heavens: “Repaint, you thinners! Repaint, and thin no more!”
Man goes to doctor saying he feels terrible. Doctor prescribes several different kinds of pills and tells the man to take them immediately with lots of water.
Man says, “Dang, doc! What do I have?!”
Doc says, “You’re dehydrated.”
Have you heard the one about the three holes in the ground?
Well, well, well…
A man has three sons. One day he calls them together and says, “Boys. One of you knocked over the outhouse. I want you to tell me who did it. Jim, did you do it?” “No, Dad.” “Frank?” “No, Dad.” “Harry?” “No, Dad.” “OK boys. Let me tell you a story. When George Washington was a little boy he chopped down his dad’s cherry tree. When his dad asked him about it George said, ‘Father, I can not tell a lie. I chopped down your cherry tree.’ And his dad loved him and praised him for being honest and telling the truth. So boys, let me ask you again. Did you knock over the outhouse?” Harry stood up and said, “Dad, I can not tell a lie. I knocked down the outhouse.” The father grabbed the boy and began spanking him vigorously. Harry said, “But Dad, I thought you said George Washington’s dad praised his son for telling the truth; he didn’t beat him because of it!” “Yes, son, but George Washington’s dad wasn’t sitting in the cherry tree!”
Water Bottle Monster
Animal Waste Management
Bring Me My Red Shirt
A treasure ship was on its way back to port. About halfway there, it was approached by a pirate, skull and crossbones waving in the breeze.
“Captain, captain, what do we do?” asked the first mate.
“First mate,” said the captain, “go to my cabin, open my sea
chest, and bring me my red shirt.” The first mate did so.
Wearing his bright red shirt, the captain exhorted his crew to
fight. So inspiring was he, in fact, that the pirate ship was repelled
A few days later, the ship was again approached, this time by two
“Captain, captain, what should we do?”
“First mate, bring me my red shirt!”
The crew, emboldened by their fearless captain, fought heroically, and
managed to defeat both boarding parties, though they took many
casualties. That night, the survivors had a great celebration. The
first mate asked the captain the secret of his bright red shirt.
“It’s simple, first mate. If I am wounded, the blood does not
show, and the crew continues to fight without fear.”
A week passed, and they were nearing their home port, when
suddenly the lookout cried that ten ships of the enemy’s armada were approaching!
“Captain, captain, we’re in terrible trouble, what do we do?”
The first mate looked expectantly at the miracle worker.
Pale with fear, the captain commanded, “First mate…. bring me my
(This is a wastewater joke, …sort of!)
Have you heard about the new Constipation movie?
It hasn’t come out yet.
How do mathematicians deal with constipation?
They work it out with a pencil.
A fisherman had two sons, Towards and Away. He told his wife that it was time for his sons to learn to be real fishermen, by going out for the big fish far off shore. A few days later the fisherman came home, wet, battered, and bruised. His sons were not with him. He told his wife,
“My dear, I’m so sad. Our son Towards was pulling in a nice fish when another fish came up and snatched it, gobbling up Towards at the same time!”
“Oh no!” The wife said. “That must have been one huge, terrible fish!”
“Yes!” Said the fisherman. “But you should have seen the one that got Away!”
Dental Chemistry Quiz
What do you call a single tooth in a glass of water?
A one molar solution.
A father just finished putting his son to bed when he heard the boy call out, “Dad! Can you bring me a glass of water?”
“No!” Replied the dad. “You already had your chance. You know I told you not to keep delaying bedtime by asking for things. Now go to sleep!”
A few minutes later the son called out again, “Dad, I’m really thirsty! Can you bring me a glass of water?”
“No! And if you keep asking I’m going to come in there and spank you!”
The son thought for a while and called out, “Dad, when you come in here to spank me, can you bring me a glass of water?”
Soup and Potatoes
Why is pee soup better than mash potatoes?
Because anyone can mash potatoes.
Why did the white, furry bear dissolve in water?
Because it was polar.
Thirty people are sheltering under an umbrella. How many of them get wet?
None. Who said it was raining?
Where can you weigh a pie?
Somewhere over the rainbow. “Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high…”
What do you call water that’s healthy for you?
A man was pulled over by a police officer who said, “Sir, you are weaving all over the road. Have you been drinking?”
The man said with a slurred voice, “Officer, I have only been drinking water.”
The officer asked for the bottle of water and smelled it.
“This isn’t water, it’s wine!”
The man looked at the police officer with astonishment and said, “The good Lord did it again!”
Laptop in the Ocean
What do you call it when a man throws his laptop into the ocean?
Adele, Rollin’ in the Deep.
There are two reasons not to drink toilet water.
Number one. And number two.
Why did the toilet paper roll down the hill?
To get to the bottom.
Why did it stop?
It got stuck in a crack.
A cop stops a stoner in a washroom in a club, searches him and finds a little Baggie of pot. The stoner says, “Look sir, it’s not my fault. Every time I try to flush it down the toilet it magically re-appears in my pocket.”
The cop laughs and says, “You really expect me to believe that?”
The stoner replies, “If you want I can show you.”
So the cop hands the weed back to him, and he flushes it down the toilet. The cop asks, “Okay, now where is it?”
“Where is what?”
Why did bacteria cross the microscope?
To get to other slide.
What did the fish say when it ran into a wall?
What did the beaver say when she slipped in water?
A man goes to a store and asks for dog food. The store clerk looks at him suspiciously and says, “We’ve had reports that people have been misusing dog food; giving it to their kids, and what-not. You’re going to have to prove you actually have a dog.”
The man comes back later and brings his dog. The clerk lets him buy the dog food.
Later on the man tries to buy cat food. Again he is told he has to prove he has a cat. He brings the cat in and the clerk sells him the cat food.
A few days later the man comes in with a paper bag and approaches the store clerk, “Feel what’s in this bag.”
The clerk does, then jumps back and looks at his hand. “This smell’s like crap!”
The man says, “It is. I need to buy some toilet paper.”
A man name Rudolf is a communist; some people just call him “The Red.” He’s sitting at breakfast with his wife one day and looking out the window says, “It looks like it’s raining out there.”
His wife responds, “No, it’s pretty cold out today. I think that’s snow.”
The man looks sternly at his wife and says, “Don’t contradict me. Rudolf the Red knows rain, dear.”
Two men rent a canoe and go fishing in a remote part of a lake. They are having an excellent day, catching a bunch of fish. One man says, “Man, we need to mark this spot. We’re tearing ’em up!”
The other man takes out his pocket knife and starts carving a big X in the bottom of the canoe.
“What are you doing?” asks the first man.
“I’m marking our spot, like you said!”
“You idiot! How do you know we’ll get the same canoe next time?!”
A mother was putting her son to bed during a thunder storm and he was feeling a little scared. He said, “Mom, can you sleep in my room with me tonight?”
She replied with a kind smile, “I’m sorry, son, I need to sleep in Daddy’s room tonight.”
The boy frowned and said, “The big sissy!”