This is a story from when I was working in the Children’s Area of the Athens-Clarke County Library:

There were two sisters who befriended me and my coworker and who came to the library to see us once or twice a week. They were 9 and 11 years old. One day, when only the older girl was there. The three of us started telling silly jokes. I told them the joke about the duck that walks into a bar:

One day, a duck walked into a bar and asked the bar tender “Do you have any duck food?”

The bar tender said “No.”
The next day, the duck walked into the bar and asked the bar tender “Do you have any duck food?”
The bar tender said “No.”
The next day, the duck walked into the bar again and asked the bar tender “Do you have any duck food?”
The bar tender said, “No, I don’t have any duck food, and if you ask me again, I’m going to nail your little webbed feet to the bar.”
The next day, the duck walked into the bar and asked the bar tender “Do you have any nails?”
The bar tender said “No.”
“Good,” said the duck, “Do you have any duck food.”

My coworker and our friend both thought the joke was pretty funny. A few days later, both the girl and her younger sister were visiting us. The older girl decided to tell this joke to her sister. This is how she told it:

One day, a duck walked into a barn and asked the farmer “Do you have any duck food?”
The farmer said “No.”
The next day, the duck walked into the barn and asked the farmer “Do you have any duck food?”
The farmer said “No.”
The next day, the duck walked into the barn again and asked the farmer “Do you have any duck food?”
The farmer said, “No, I don’t have any duck food, and if you ask me again, I’m going to nail your little webbed feet to the barn floor.”
The next day, the duck walked into the barn and asked the farmer “Do you have any nails?”
The farmer said “No.”
“Good,” said the duck, “Do you have any duck food.”

This reveals something of how our minds remember stories and jokes we hear. She remembered the heart of the joke, what made it funny, and filled in the rest with what made the most sense to her. An adult hears this joke and is immediately reminded of other “bar jokes”:

Bacon and eggs walked into a bar and the bar tender said, “We don’t serve breakfast.”

A rope walked into a bar and the bar tender said, “We don’t serve your kind.”

The rope walked back outside, tangled himself up, ruffled his ends, and then walked back in.

The bar tender said, “You’re not a rope, are you?”

“Nope, I’m a frayed knot.”

(My new favorite from my sister, who is a piano teacher.)

C, E flat, and G walked into a bar. The bar tender said, “We don’t serve minors.”

So, E flat left and C and G shared a fifth.

No, what a child thinks of when she hears the joke is something more along the lines of, “Old MacDonald had a farm…”

So that’s how she tells it, as a farm joke, not as a bar joke.

The best part is, it’s still funny.

Source