The most played out joke ever.

May 4, 2008 at 2:23 pm 5 comments

People ask me, they say, “Carrie, you’re the expert, and you’re so good looking, what is the most played out joke ever written?” This is my reply.

The thinking-the-potpourri-is-trail-mix joke is officially the most played out joke ever written, at least for the screen. It works like this:

There are a group of characters standing around. One of the characters, usually the “dumb” one, is eating something out of a bowl with his hands, the audience assumes it’s some kind of chips. There are a few seconds of unrelated dialog and then the character eating says either, “This trail mix is great” or, “This trail mix is terrible” and another character says, “Dude, that’s potpourri.” Then, the character eating can either shrug and continue eating or dramatically spit out the potpourri. Works every time.

This joke has been written into every single movie, TV sit-com and TV drama to come out in the last 30 years. Off the top of my head, I’ve seen it on Friends, my beloved Scrubs, and in a movie trailer for a movie that just came out that I’m probably not going to see. It’s the most played out joke ever. It’s not that funny and I implore writers to think of other, more creative ways to work potpourri into a script.


Entry filed under: Not funny enough for the stage, Observations.

Lounging at the Laugh Lounge. Write my autobiography? By Saturday?

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. jearwood  |  May 6, 2008 at 5:34 pm


  • 2. Allyn  |  May 18, 2008 at 10:38 pm

    it bothers me that this graphic you have used seems to be of a four-fingered hand. yucky. no offense to those missing digits, of course…

    and when’s the next show?

  • 3. carriegravenson  |  May 18, 2008 at 11:23 pm

    I see five distinct fingers. You = weird.

    The next show is May 28 and then June 7th. Thanks for the reminder. They are up on the site.

  • 4. Shawn  |  May 27, 2008 at 3:14 pm

    When Curly (or was it Shemp?) tried to make soup from S-O-A-P, they should have declared a permanent moratorium on jokes of that nature.

    And yet, in the 1980s, some dumb bunny filed suit against the company that makes Sunlight dishwashing liquid…because the enticing colored-pencil rendering of a lemon on the bottle had caused them to add some of the delicious potion to their iced tea.

    Wish I could make your show this Wednesday!

  • 5. Harris Bloom  |  May 29, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    Hey carrie,

    at first, I thought you were on drugs…until you wrote “…on the screen” – then yeah, i prolly agree.


    rock on,



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Next shows:

Thursday, December 1st
Ed Sullivan On Acid Comedy Show
The Duplex
61 Christopher St
New York, NY

Sunday, December 11th
Jazz on the Park


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