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Date: Mon, 28 Oct 2002 17:36:37 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: (urth) PEACE: Sherry's immigrant joke

Sherry tells Weer that joke about the immigrant who writes back to his
cousin about how on the first day in the new country a person eats free in
the best restaurant, sleeps in the most luxurious hotel, and gets a hatful
of money and jewels.

The cousin writes back and says "This happened to you?"

And the first guy says, "Not to me, no; but to my _sister_."

At the first glancing and most innocent level, this joke has the form of
urban legends -- i.e., the wonderful is always a step removed yet still at
some believable relation ("it didn't happen to me but to a friend of my

The more realistic level of the joke is that the sister has prostituted
herself (a native has wined, dined, bedded, and paid her) and the
immigrants are too naive to understand such prostitution, for any variety
of reasons (for example, they always got the same in the old country and
were still treated like dirt).

This is a curious joke to come from a girl who has just prostituted herself
for purposes of blackmail!

But it also matches well with what we know about Doris: as a pretty yet
mundane girl in the carny world, her roles are limited to using her body
for titilation or outright prostitution, and she is treated like dirt.  But
if she were a freak, she would be an aristocrat among the carnies.

I make this parallel not to link Sherry and Doris as being the same person,
or even related, but being both young women feeling pressure to prostitute



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