This popsicle stick joke makes no sense to me

I always try and guess the punch line to the jokes on popsicle sticks. They are clearly written in ten minutes by a harried popsicle executive. (Example: What did the computer do when he was hungry? He had a bite. What did the layer name his daughter? Sue.)

This one I don’t understand at all:

What do you call a robot with no job?

An employed droid.

Does this make sense to anyone? The only way it would possibly make sense to me would be if it were “What do you call a robot with a job” or if the answer were “An unemployed droid.” I have now encountered this joke about three times in the box, so I have to rule out one-off misprint.

Here is what the package looks like. I will scan the offending stick if I must.

OK, so it’s not exactly “what is the meaning of life” but it’s irritating me nonetheless.

Am I missing something?

I think it’s a typo.

You’re not the only one who’s noticed, either.

I think it’s a lame Android joke of some sort. Also, it rhymes. That alone is unspeakably hilarious.

They inserted “employed” in the middle of “android”. I think you’re supposed to elide “an employed” so it sounds more like “anemployed”. This is what passes for cleverness among popsicle makers.

But then it should still be “anunemployed droid.” A robot with no job is unemployed.

And if it’s a typo it’s being printed on tons of popsicle sticks. Where is the quality control? ::weeps::

The funny thing is, most of these jokes actually work in their own inane way. (Why didn’t the oyster share his pearl? He was shellfish). This one fails miserably.

OK, here’s another explanation I just though of. Maybe the robot lost his job to the driod? So if the robot doesn’t have a job, the droid does have it? Eh, I got nothin’

One meaning of the prefix an- is not.
So anemployed means the same an unemployed, but with a more androidy sound to it.
Or so I guess.

No, “anemployed” == “unemployed”.

“An employed droid” == “anemployed droid” == “unemployed droid”

God help me, I laughed.

That would be at a level of sophistication so far beyond these jokes that I can’t bring myself to accept that’s what they were going for. We’re talking “Why did the little boy look at the car radio?” He wanted to see a car-tune. I’d more easily go for “typo.”

anemployed == unemployed
car-tune == cartoon
shellfish == selfish

Seems about the same level of sophistication to me.

Dude, c’mon. These are kiddie jokes devised at the lowest level of pun for popsicle eating children. “Anemployed” can’t possibly be meant for kids.

It didn’t used to. When I was in the business we wrote nothing but quality, but then there was this huge layoff at the fortune cookie fortune writers guild…

“Anemployed” is a simple mispronunciation of “unemployed”, not a sophisticated substitution of the Greek prefix “an-”, meaning “not”, for the English prefix “un-”, also meaning “not”.

If they’d simply said that it would’ve been funny.

But then why does it have to be a droid?

I think it was just meant to be “An unemployed droid”, the humor being all in the rhyme, and “droid” sufficing on its own to refer to a robot. However, it suffered an unfortunate typo.

I’m thinkin’ these popsicle sticks are manufactured in China. Prolly a new line being started up by the same guy that writes unintelligible fortune cookie fortunes and appliance manuals that offer such sage advice as “do not operate while sleeping.”

What’s brown and sticky?

A stick

Better check for lead.

Had I not just finished my drink, I would have sprayed it across the computer screen there. Well done. My friends are going to hate you for that as I tell it to ALL OF THEM, EVERY DAY for the rest of my life. Or until I see something shiny and forget.