February 17, 2010

Did You Hear the One About the Avar and the Dargin?

According to a story over at the New York Times, there is a magical land of humor where everyone likes to tell jokes. It’s the Russian republic of Dagestan, a mountainous area that has more than a dozen different ethnic groups, many with their own customs and languages.

This makes it a “fertile ground for humor as Dagestanis can tell stories about silly villagers and ethnic jokes all the day long.

So we present for your approval, Dagestani jokes!

An Avar is carrying a wounded Dargin off the battlefield. The Dargin begs his friend to leave him behind, lest they both be killed, and asks the one favor of shooting him so he does not suffer. The Avar, finally convinced, pulls out his firearm but finds he has no ammunition. The Dargin roots in his pockets and pulls out a bullet. “I’ll sell it to you,” he says.
An Avar is driving through Makhachkala with a Lakh in the passenger seat. Spotting a red light, he speeds through it. “You just ran a red light!” the Lakh says. “Avars don’t stop for red lights,” the Avar explains, and speeds through another. In a few minutes, they come to a green light, and the Avar stops. “Why did you stop?” the Lakh asks. “You can’t be too careful,” his friend says, “an Avar might be coming the other way.”
And this one is my favorite:
A man approaches his neighbor Gitya, who is a member of the group known as the Avars. He says, “Gitya, I heard a great joke the other day, but it’s about Avars. I don’t want to offend you, so I’ll tell it about Azeris.” He tells the joke, and Gitya laughs so hard that tears stream down his face. “Man,” Gitya gasps, catching his breath. “Those Azeris sure are idiots!”

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