[Ads-l] Joke: Complainant says one should never end a sentence with a preposition. Rejoinder includes a terminal work like jerk or jackass

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu Mar 7 18:58:17 UTC 2019

I was just asked to explore a joke about prepositions, but I have not
made much progress. Here are the two earliest instances I've seen.
Maybe a list member can find earlier evidence.

February 24, 1980, The Montgomery Advertiser
[Begin excerpt]
"Did you hear the one about the Auburn co-ed who had a blind date with
an Alabama student? To make conversation, she asked her date, "Where
do you go to school at?" He said he went to Alabama and that he was
taught there never to end a sentence with a preposition. Replied the
Auburn co-ed: "Okay, I'll change my question . . . where do you go to
school at, meathead?"
[End excerpt]

May 21, 1982, Atlanta Constitution
[Begin excerpt]
So, at Harvard Square, he finds a fellow with a pipe dressed in a
tweed jacket, rep tie and Gucci loafers and yells, "Hey, can you tell
me where the Charles River's at?" The Harvard preppie replies, "My
good man, we at Harvard never end a sentence with a preposition."
Auburn man answers, "All right. Do you know where the Charles River's
at, jerk?"
[End excerpt]

The terminal words I've seen include: jerk, jackass, meathead,
asshole, bitch, and witch.


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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