‘Do you know what I mean?’

‘Do you know what I mean?’

There are few moments that can be more cringe-worthy than a joke falling flat. Just ask Australian news anchor Karl Stefanovic, who was not only able to bemuse the Dalai Lama with a misplaced gag, but also managed to do it on national television.

Jokes don’t often translate, and when your opening line ‘The Dalai Lama walks into a pizza shop’, is met by the inquisitive reply ‘pizza?’, it is probably time to give up. Yet our plucky anchor continued to deliver the punch line ‘and says “can you make me one with everything?”’.

The Dalai Lama stared blankly at his interpreter before revealing a polite smile. But the damage was done, and Stefanovic was squirming in his seat before finally conceding ‘oh I knew that wouldn’t work’.

Written by Matt Train
Matt Train
Matt Train is Operations Director at TranslateMedia - responsible for working with clients and system integration partners to advise, plan, and deliver multilingual digital content for international brands and content publishers.

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