Truly Tasteless Jokes was written by Blanche Knott and published in 1982 by Ballantine Books. It is the first in a series of joke-books which have sold over 5 million copies world-wide.

I found this rather infamous book in my mom's bookcase when I was about 11-years-old, and in a few days time, acquired a distinct advantage over my friends and school-mates in the field of being obscene, rude, offensive, vulgar, shocking, disgusting, traumatizing and just plain verbally depraved. Some of the sexual acts described in the joke-book were a little obscure for someone at that age to know about, but I set out on a quest to obtain the appropriate knowledge to make the jokes I didn't get make sense ("Dad, what is 'eating pussy'?...Oh, the tongue thing? Yeah yeah, gotcha."). For a while, my otherwise socially ostracized self had the benefit of all the other guys crowding around my table during lunch and then bursting out into laughter. Sometimes someone didn't get the joke, and this other foul-mouthed kid, Adam, would whisper an explanation into the confused person's ear, prompting eyes to bulge open. The person would then collapse, sometimes to the floor, in laughter. The teachers had no idea what the hell was going on.

Of course, my mom discovered I'd been reading it and threw it away, but it was too late: I had the entire book practically memorized. It's understandable that she threw it out, this book really, really isn't meant to be read by kids. In addition to the sexual jokes, chapters are dedicated to racist/misogynist/homophobic jokes poking merciless fun at every minority imaginable, as well as White Anglo-Saxon Protestants, just to balance things out a little.

At a party, this book can either be a boon to making everyone laugh, or getting your ass kicked. There is no in-between. I've been to a party where someone was telling jokes, and every single one of them came from this book. Luckily for him, everyone was laughing hysterically. I was nice and only stole his punchlines about half the time. In my experience, many of the more popular dirty jokes which circulate around the populace can be traced back to, or are at least featured, in this book.

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