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Not really a shaggy dog story, because it does have a punchline, but close enough. I present to you: The Cornflake Joke. This joke is supposed to be told in person (as will become obvious), and you get bonus points for making the audience start singing along the refrain with you.




One day, on the conveyor belt at the cornflake factory, the grandmother cornflake called over the baby cornflake. In her rickety, shaking voice, the grandmother cornflake intoned: "I'm not going to last too much longer, and before I go, there's one thing that I want you to know. This is important, sonny, so listen up: Whatever you do, wherever you go, however you get there, the single most important thing in life is to be at the top of the box of cornflakes. The best cornflakes are at the top of the box. Got that, sonny? Be at the top."

And no sooner had the grandmother cornflake uttered these words than cornflake inspector #4 came by, noticed her, and threw her out because she had too many spots, leaving the baby cornflake all alone.

Eventually, the conveyor belt came to an end, and the baby cornflake was dumped into a box of cornflakes. As fate would have it, the baby cornflake was at the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

Now, a worker came by, and picked up the box of cornflakes, and stacked it on a pallet...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

Just then, a forklift came by to pick up the pallet and put it in the back of a truck...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

When all of the pallets are loaded on the truck, the truck driver comes by and slams the back of the truck down. In fact, he slams it down so hard that the entire truck shakes...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

Eventually, the truck driver starts the truck. Unfortunately, the truck driver never went to truck driving school, and he ends up backing into a wall on the way out of the lot...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

And, as fate would have it, the truck driver also hits the curb turning on to the main street...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.

Driving down the highway, finally, the truck gets passed by a convertible. The driver in the convertible is listening to some music with a lot of bass, the vibrations causing the truck to shake from the proximity...and the little cornflake got all shook up, and he fell to the bottom of the box. But, he remembered what his grandmother cornflake had said: "The best cornflakes are at the top of the box." So he pushed and he pulled and he pulled and he pushed, and he got to the top of the box.




Etc. Etc. The joke continues (going to the grocery store with the stock boy who kicks boxes, the children who grab it and the mother puts it back, the family who buy it but get hit by a car on the way home, it being sent back to the factory because it's expiration date has passed, the now grandfather cornflake instructing the new generation, the joke starting all over...until a member of the audience gets impatient and shouts, "Just get to the end already!"

And that's when, with a straight face and knowledge of the nearest exit, you say:

"But there is no end; it's a serial!"