Saskatchewan

Saskatoon comedian authors book that ribs Saskatchewan for 144 pages

Joel Jeffrey, a comedian in Saskatoon, wrote a book, titled Great Saskatchewan Joke Book: More Laughs Than Potholes, which was published in August.

Great Saskatchewan Joke Book: More Laughs Than Potholes written by Joel Jeffrey was published in August

Joel Jeffrey, who has toured the province as a comedian for over a decade, was contacted by a publishing house in Halifax, NS about writing the joke book. (Submitted by Joel Jeffrey)

Knock, knock — there's a new book out filled with jokes about Saskatchewan.

Joel Jeffrey, a comedian in Saskatoon, wrote 144 pages of jokes specifically poking fun at the Land of the Living Skies. The book, Great Saskatchewan Joke Book: More Laughs Than Potholes, was published in August.

"I love Saskatchewan. The people here are very enjoyable," said Jeffrey.

"I've been telling jokes on the road throughout the province for about a decade, and I just feel like, whenever I'm here and at home telling jokes, it's more fun and it's more inviting."

Jeffrey believes the people who live in Saskatchewan have a good sense of humour partly because it's unexpected.

"People assume that Saskatchewan is just boring and flat. [Saskatchewanians] don't know anything," he said. "But if you can turn all that on its head, it turns into a pretty good joke."

The book has jokes about the Saskatchewan Roughriders, the different provincial and national parks and bunny hugs, among others. (Submitted by Joel Jeffrey)

Some classic Saskatchewan-based jokes include: the province is easier to draw than to spell, and people here can watch their dog run away for three days.

Jeffrey's joke book claims the latter was disproved by a University of Saskatchewan study that found a person could only watch their dog run away for 68 hours — four hours short of three full days.

Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Jeffrey has toured the province as a comedian for over a decade. Then MacIntyre Purcell Publishing Inc, a publishing house in Halifax, NS, looked up Jeffrey online and contacted him about writing the joke book.

"When I had a book deal in my email, I thought, 'Well, OK, I'll give it a shot,'" Jeffrey said.

"It was a lot of fun. I took a lot of the stuff that we know about Saskatchewan, and then I just tried to make it unpredictable and make it fun and just give people a new, fresh take on all the stuff we already know about this province."

As a comedian, Jeffrey is used to writing jokes for sets frequently. But the book was slightly different, he said.

"I'm a voracious writer. I write all the time and I can't stop writing jokes. I have a I have an addiction to it," he said. "Just writing about Saskatchewan was something different.

"Usually you just write about whatever you get inspired to write about, so I had to really discipline myself to do it."

Saskatoon comedian and author Joel Jeffrey joins Saskatchewan Weekend host Peter Mills to talk about his new book and the funniest parts of Saskatchewan. 9:11

Many comedians, especially starting out, use audiences as guinea pigs of sorts to test material they come up with and see what crowds find funny. So another quirky part of writing the book was not being able to test his material, Jeffrey added.

"I got to try it out on an editor instead and then he told me what he didn't like."

In the book, Jeffrey talks about the beloved Saskatchewan Roughriders, the different provincial and national parks and bunny hugs — which he had a hard time finding where the name came from. 

"You don't realize how little you know about your province until you start actually trying to put answers to some of these questions and then you find out a lot more," Jeffrey said, adding that he learned a lot about Moose Jaw, Sask.

With files from Saskatchewan Weekend

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