Will the joke/pun be understood outside the US

I’m thinking about printing these three postcards off, but one may be culturally specific and two have puns that may but be understood by those for whom English is a second (or third) language.

So here they aren


Are the fishes on the first card candies?

I don’t get the joke for card no 2 and 3

I only get the first… The others look like jokes about Kentucky… That is too specific for the average non American in my opinion.

I get the “pun” but not any associations that it may have with Kentucky. If it does not have any, well I would still be looking for possible associations… Is Kentucky usually cold? What is fishy about Kentucky? Haha


Hello Dave,
First one is pretty clear, but second and third…
I haven’t got a clue!

I totally agree with @sm1.

The first one is straight forward.
For the other two I would have to have more knowledge about Kentucky - or at least I would think so.

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The first one is fairly obvious

The 2nd one - I think you’d need to explain that chillin, means relaxing

And same with the 3rd one - explaining that fishing is a regular activity in Kentucky

I get the first, but it makes me wonder if there is some kind of fish version for an apple in day keeps doctor away that I have not heard of, or is it just because fish shaped candies.

The second is just about chilling meaning both relaxing and cold… right…? It feels almost too simple to be a pun.

And the third is my fave… hehe he, suspicious fishing.

I dont understand the 3rd.

You can still swap those with US Postcrossers!

I understand all of them and think they’re cool!

I understand them, too, and I think they are quite funny! :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

However, I agree that they might be a little difficult to understand for people who aren’t fluent in English or who don’t know that the cards refer to funny aspects of your state.

First one is pretty obvious.

About second and third - I would assume that there is cold in Kentucky and that fishing is popular there, even without knowing much about Kentucky.

I get all 3, but not on first instinct. I imagine it might be hard for those who might not be as fluent in English. Puns are usually appreciated by those who understand the language better and the various ‘double meanings’.

Once I heard a VOA Learning English programme “Words and their Stories” about “fishing” and there they said the word “fishy” had a negative connotation.

They could be tricky for non native English speakers because of lack of context.

I think because the candy is recognized (for the most part) worldwide that one would fit for any postcrosser. However; the other 2 would be limited to the U.S. due to the proximity of the pun along with the card. Just my opinion.


I understand the first one easily. I understand the second one, but I think it will be hard to understand for many. I don’t get the 3rd one.

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It’s not about English fluency. It’s about culture.
If they were about NY or LA, many people would understand because Hollywood movies and serials always show us NY and LA.
We know nothing about Kentucky but Kentucky Fried Chicken.


Yes! That’s exactly what I think.
I know that chilling is cold and that to chill is to relax - we even use it in German! - and I also know that when something is fishy it is a bit dubious and suspicious.
But my lack of knowledge of Kentucky and its specifics make the last two cards rather boring.


Yes [following on the two posts above but it won’t let me quote]… my English is very fluent (if I say so myself :innocent:), but the 2nd and 3rd don’t really mean much to me. In the second one, is the joke that Kentucky is hot, so chillin’ with frozen trees make it funny?
For the third, it makes me imagine that there is an in-joke about Kentucky and “fishy”, or maybe “fishy” is a slang word in Kentucky that is well known across the USA, but I am not familiar with it (and neither are others in this thread)?
As yudi said, in the media we see NY and LA all the time so depending on what you watched, you will get some things.

Interesting topic though, it was good to ask and it must be interesting to know that most of us don’t get the 2nd and 3rd jokes…


Well, the “in Kentucky” doesn’t reference the pun but where it is sent from.

Fishy can mean relating to fish.

For example: I couldn’t get the fishy smell out if the cooler so i had to throw it away.

But “Something’s fishy” means I have a feeling Photo by Thirdman from Pexels is happening that shouldn’t