A virus walks into a bar . . .

All geeks love science jokes (one of my favorites: what's purple and drives to work? Answer: an Abelian grape [explanation, the elements of an Abelian group commute, i.e., a + b = b + a]).

Science jokes are good. You can learn some science from them. In particular, the first three or four of this set of groaners involve viruses and infectious diseases and each tell you -- vividly -- an important truth. The rest are pretty good, too.

Enjoy (hat tip Boingboing):

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Those were great. Passed on url to some of my collagues who do actual science :-)

The neutrino joke was a bit wimpish but the rest were good.

Those were fun. Thanks a lot :)

A biochemist eats some D-dextrose and then tries some L-dextrose. Since he didn't get sick he assumes he's ambidextrose.

These were bad.

JJackson - I saw what you did there you MACHO guy you.

"She has worms, and I love to fish."

I've always heard your opener as "what's purple and commutes?" which strikes me as much funnier than your version. I think because it makes the punchline close enough for the "I should have seen that coming" reaction. Ah, and google agrees: all 7 hits for your version are you, against 49,200 hits for my version!

By Mathematician (not verified) on 24 Nov 2009 #permalink

(originated with the late Peggy G., probably the best math student in our year)--
You've heard of the group of two elements? One is the identity element. And so is the other.

I don't know what's the matter with you Don, always so dark.

A Dr., a lawyer & a statistician go deer hunting with bow & arrow.

The Dr. shoots 1st: 20 ft short.. the lawyer next - 20 ft long.

The statistician shouts, "We got 'im"

Here's an original (of mine): Why didn't the statistician like the two-tailed test? Because he thought it was bi-assed.

Much better!

By Mathematician (not verified) on 24 Nov 2009 #permalink

My favorite is an old one that's found in many forms; here's one that's close to my favorite of it (I've substituted Scientist for Physicist), found at http://www.xs4all.nl/~jcdverha/scijokes/6_2.html

An Engineer, a Scientist, and a Mathematician all go the same Conference. University budgets being what they are, they all stay in the same cheap hotel. Each room has the same floor plan, has the same cheap TV, the same cheap bed, and a small bathroom. Instead of a sprinkler system, the hotel has opted for Fire Buckets.

The Engineer, Scientist, and Mathematician are all asleep in bed. At about 2AM, the Engineer wakes up because he smells smoke. He looks in the corner of the room and sees that the TV set is on fire! He dashes into the bathroom, fills the Fire Bucket to overflowing with water, and drenches the TV set. The fire goes out, and the Engineer goes back to sleep.

A little while later, the Scientist wakes because he smells smoke. He looks in the corner and sees that the TV set is on fire. He grabs a handy envelope, estimates the BTU output of the fire, scribbles a quick calculation, then dashes into the bathroom and fills the Fire Bucket with just enough water to douse the flames. He puts the fire out and goes back to sleep.

In a little while, the Mathematician wakes up to the smell of smoke. He looks in the corner and sees the TV on fire. He looks into the bathroom and sees the Fire Bucket. Having determined that a solution exists, he goes back to sleep.

(In academics I was a scientist, in my career a software and systems engineer, and my first job was for a group of mathematicians.)

By Lina Inverse (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

JJackson, you massively annihilated Don! (Not that I'm accusing him of being dense or anything)

By Jody Lanard (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

Jody three quarters of Don's post are obscure, most of the rest at least have the power to move me but I can periodically tabulate those that really throw light on the matter in no more than about 3% of cases.
P.S. Liked your vaccine supply piece

Jody[,] three quarters of Don's post are obscure

At the risk of ruining that joke: MACHO = massive compact [ = dense!] halo object, WIMP = weakly interacting massive particle. Both used to be candidates for what dark matter might be, and MACHOs have been ruled out.

By David MarjanoviÄ (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

And then I watched the video. Now my jaw joints hurt.

By David MarjanoviÄ (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

Yes we are geeks ... and proud of it!

It's fun, isn't it, Don S?

I oscillate between trying to top JJackson (impossible) and giving up because I'm too scattered.

(And JJackson, thanks. Will pass your compliment on to Peter. That kind of comment makes our day.)

Revere(s), thanks so much for posting "A Virus Walks Into a Bar!"

By Jody Lanard (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

Charming Jody, you may be oscillating but I am all in a spin, tops down, bottoms up. Strange it makes me want to bark like a duck.

"Quark quark!"

By Jody Lanard (not verified) on 25 Nov 2009 #permalink

I wondered if you would get the answer right. I knew you get the reference but you got the exact answer very nice.

from a riddle song some may recall, which I heard in my youth at a university paralyzed around science:

"Don't know Avogadro's number - he ain't got no phone.
You don't put ice cream in a cube - you put it in a cone."

And here's a joke I made up myself:

How many catatonics does it take to change a light bulb?

2 Hydrogen atoms are hanging out, when one turns to the other and say, "Holy Shit! I just lost an electron."
The other turns to him and asks, "Are you sure?"
The first one replies, "Yeah, I'm positive!"