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Joel in the News


Need a laugh? Here are some excerpts from the Great Saskatchewan Joke Book
Writing the book was a "sweet escape" for Jeffrey, and he hopes it offers comic relief as this time of stress and uncertainty stretches on.


Author of the article:Saskatoon StarPhoenix
Publishing date: Nov 27, 2020  •  10 minute read


Joel Jeffrey knows Saskatchewan could use a laugh right now.


The Saskatoon-based standup comedian finished the Great Saskatchewan Joke Book about a month into the pandemic. He said writing it was a “sweet escape” for him, and he hopes it offers comic relief as this time of stress and uncertainty stretches on.

Jeffrey has lived most of his life in Saskatoon, with exceptions of two years in B.C. and one year in Alberta. He took his comic talent and applied it to creating a volume full of humorous observations about his home province. Everything is fair game, from the conditions of our roads, to our wildlife to that most sacred of subjects: The Roughriders.

He knows people like to poke fun at our province. “I wanted to turn that on its head,” he says. “I love this province and I think it gets undersold.”

The following is an excerpt from the book. To contact Jeffery or for more information on picking up a copy, go to

All About Saskatchewan
Saskatchewan is one of the greatest provinces in Canada. This statement is not only a sentiment from the author of this book, but also a confirmed statistic from various opinion polls. Did you know that Saskatchewan has been consistently listed in the top 10 provinces in Canada for over 100 years?


If you’re unfamiliar with this incredible piece of prairie, it is a beautiful and intoxicating province in the middle of Western Canada, in that the more intoxicated you get, the more beautiful it becomes. One of Saskatchewan’s most Canadian features is its shape, which is a homage to one of Canada’s oldest institutions, Canada Post. It is a rectangular box that is slightly dented at the top, resembling most of the parcels delivered by Canada Post. What a tribute!

Saskatchewan is a beautiful and intoxicating province in the middle of Western Canada. The more intoxicated you get, the more beautiful it becomes.

Easy on Paper

Saskatchewan has long been called the country’s easiest province to draw because its borders are long and straight. This is true for the most part, unless you’ve had too many double doubles and have the shakes. A little sidebar for you: the border between Alberta and British Columbia was drawn in this way after a caffeine overdose. About halfway down was when the third cup of coffee kicked in for the cartographer and he lost control of his steady hand.


The area of Saskatchewan is 651,900 square kilometres. All these kilometres are quite literally square and fit almost perfectly into the province because of its shape. Imagine all those square boxes fitting perfectly into one large rectangular box. Wonderful, isn’t it? No other province or territory can offer this.




The Official Religion of Saskatchewan
You probably already have an idea of what you think is the official religion of Saskatchewan. It’s a timeless religion that has been celebrated by the majority of the province for over a century. If the religion “The Saskatchewan Roughriders” popped into your head, then congratulations — you may know more about the prairie province than you think.


Sunday's CFL game between the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the visiting Winnipeg Blue Bombers was only part of the festivities on Labour Day weekend. At the top, Sandra Barrie of Moose Jaw and Jared Fernell, 13, of Regina celebrate being named the winners of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and Museum's 
Most gatherings for the Roughrider devout occur on weekends in the summer and fall months during the CFL regular season. The devoted still practice their faith in the winter off-season by getting together to talk about the wondrous things that will happen “next season.”

The Saskatchewan Roughriders began in 1910. In those early years, the religion started off as most do — with an explosively contagious boom that drew in the masses. People couldn’t help but pledge their support for a team that won 15 of their first 21 title games. Many wish the team could go back to those early years. Some skeptics debate if those miraculous championship wins really happened, and insist they were embellished and became legend as the stories were transferred orally over the years. No one knows for sure.

Most gatherings for the Roughrider devout occur on weekends in the summer and fall months during the CFL regular season. The devoted still practice their faith in the winter off-season by getting together to talk about the wondrous things that will happen “next season.” In fact, focusing on “next season” as opposed to the “current season,” seems to be one of the most celebrated practices of Roughrider followers.

Most religions have their opponents. This is true of the Roughrider religion. There are those who would seek to have the green and white religion dissolved, abolished and destroyed. Those opponents mainly come from Winnipeg and are worshippers of the Blue Bomber faith. The two groups, the Roughriders and the Blue Bombers, have a long and bloody adversarial history. Experts believe a peaceful coexistence between the two sects may never be possible.


As with any religion, there are customs that are confusing and strange to the outsider. Such is the case for those observing the Roughrider faith. One such tradition is the wearing of watermelons on your head. This fruit cranium culture is not only confusing for people looking in from the outside, but devoted fans seem equally perplexed by the purpose and origin. As astonishing as it may be, no one across the province or even the country understands why this practice exists.

Watermelon helmets are intimidating. If a person is willing to wear a watermelon on their head, there’s no telling what other crazy things they’re capable of.

The watermelon-head custom is confusing but persists as a major and very popular part of Roughrider sacramental tradition. I have a few theories about why this is:

Watermelon helmets are intimidating. If a person is willing to wear a watermelon on their head, there’s no telling what other crazy things they’re capable of.


Watermelon helmets mask your emotions. If you wear a melon helmet with a face mask, it hides the fact that you’re crying because the Riders lost again.
Watermelon helmets insulate the wearer from the elements. Many Roughrider games take place in the cold. Little known fact: watermelons provide great R-value. You could insulate an entire home with watermelons.




No Nudity!
Saskatchewan is one of the last bastions of morality in Canada, and continues to hold back the flood gates on exposed skin. Not only does our weather strong-arm you into covering up your body with excessive layers of clothing, so do our politicians. Here in Saskatchewan, strip clubs are outlawed. If residents of our province want to see a stranger expose their most intimate parts, they’ll have to suffer the inconvenience of driving to Alberta or Manitoba. (Or excuse themselves to the bathroom to use their smartphone.)


The naked truth in Saskatchewan is that stripping is illegal in bars where alcohol is served. This is sobering news for people wanting to be intoxicated by not only alcohol, but the private parts of perfect strangers. But if you read between the lines, this also means that getting naked in front of a bunch of gawkers consuming non-alcoholic beverages is perfectly permissible.

You heard me right — restaurants that are unlicensed can host exotic dancers. So far none do, but there’s a huge market hole here. For example: Tim Horton’s in Saskatchewan could have a stripper night if they wanted to. It’d be great — for once, the inside of the restaurant would be more popular than the drive through. A Tim Horton’s stripper night also lends itself to some great new stripper names (e.g. Honey Cruller, Long John, or my personal favourite — Old Fashioned Plain).


Unfortunately, the chance of Canada’s favourite fast-food restaurant hosting a night to show off your Timbits is a big doughnut hole.


You’re Not Naked if You Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve


Fortunately, for those feeling they desperately need to be entertained by the nakedness of a stranger while consuming fermented beverages, there is one major loophole — a strip show with alcohol is allowable in Saskatchewan if you’re showing your goodies for a good cause. Yes, it’s all good if the full-frontal nudity is for a fundraiser (and no, trying to pay your way through attending the University of Saskatchewan doesn’t count as fundraising).


Stripping and philanthropy probably seem like strange bedfellows, but under the right circumstances they fit together almost as well as watermelon helmets and football. There are countless ways to rejig old fundraising ideas with an added stripping element. Take the tired old bottle drive. Instead of going door to door to collect beer bottles, you can gather the empties after the show is over. Or why not strip for the less fortunate? Proceeds go to clothing the needy, and so do the articles removed by the strippers.


For those wishing to change Saskatchewan’s anti-stripping laws, the best bet is to start a petition online. And while you’re waiting for the signatures to roll in, you can satisfy your indecent desires while you’re there.




How to Draw the Province of Saskatchewan
Saskatchewan is often referred to as the easiest province in Canada to draw. This is true, as long as you have a steady hand. Unfortunately, there are several things in Saskatchewan that can make your drawing hand feel shaky, which in turn will make drawing this boxlike province a challenge. Some of those things include:


The cold weather.
Travelling in a car down a Saskatchewan highway.
Attending a Roughrider game and seeing a grown man wearing nothing but a watermelon helmet and a green thong.
Working a jackhammer. This one is fairly unrealistic, as using a jackhammer would imply road repair work was underway in Saskatchewan, and we all know that rarely happens in this province.


Fortunately, there are methods to help you draw the province even when your hands are feeling a bit unsteady. One such method is to find someone from Saskatchewan and ask them to remove their boot so you can trace around their foot. Most Saskatchewan residents are friendly and are more than willing to do this for you. Not only that, but Saskies have perfectly rectangular foot shapes, which are excellent tools for drawing the province. This unusual foot shape is the result of frostbite-related amputation.


If no toeless Sask. people are around, a stencil of a foot with toes amputated has been provided on the next page. Happy drawing!




Saskatchewan has many of its own sayings and unique phrases that may almost seem like a foreign language to someone outside the province. Learning the local slang and vernacular can be a big help to outsiders travelling through Saskatchewan. Here is a compiled list of many of the Saskatcheterms you’ll hear in the province:

Going for a dart. This means going outside for a cigarette. Smokers from Saskatchewan are aware that smoking is bad for you, and they don’t want to be a bad influence, so they disguise their unhealthy habit as going to play a fun sport. We’re a caring people.


Bush League. This means that something is inferior. If you don’t like this book, for example, the Saskatchewan way to leave a review would be to say, “This book was bush league.” If you enjoy the book, you can still leave a Saskatchewan style review by saying, “This book was anything but bush league.”


Hit the rhubarb. This means “hitting the ditch,” and it’s a cute and delicious way to disguise the fact that you’re a bad driver.


Gotch or Gitch. These are Saskatchewan terms for underwear. Careful who you say them to. For example, when I tell my wife she looks sexy in her new gotch from Victoria’s Secret, it usually doesn’t go over well.


Goin’ for a Pil. This means you’re going to drink a Pilsner. Again, people from Saskatchewan don’t want to be a bad influence, so we disguise bad behaviour as taking medication.

Vico. Vico is Saskatchewan talk for chocolate milk. Vico was a brand of chocolate milk that existed in Sask up until 1995. If the name is mentioned, it will most likely be by someone who was born well before 1995 that understands the reference. It’s hard to decide what’s more unnerving — hearing the name Vico or seeing someone who is 30 plus years in age ordering chocolate milk.


Prince Albert Speak. People from the city of PA seem to have their own way of speaking. The residents of this city love speaking in double negatives in order to compliment something or someone. For example — you’ll hear Prince Albert residents say things like, “Poor deadly game the Riders didn’t play last night.” This means the Riders had a great game. Easy to follow, right? Or as people from PA will tell you, “Hardly good conversation we didn’t just have there, bud.”

Stubble Jumpers. This is a name given to people who have left the province. Some people decide to leave, others are sent out. They are called “stubble jumpers,” because it sounds less conspicuous than “missionaries sent to spread Rider pride throughout the country.” You’ll see us everywhere wearing our green and white.


Garlic Curtain or Perogy Belt. This is referring to the area east of Saskatoon and going all the way over to Yorkton. The nicknames were given due to the sheer volume of Ukrainians who live in this region. And if there’s one thing Ukrainians love, it’s garlic. If you’re afraid of vampires, this is the safest area of Saskatchewan to live in.


Bismark. A bismark sounds like something you would have with your afternoon tea. But don’t be fooled by the name, bismarks are merely doughnuts filled with jelly or pudding. Leave it to people from Saskatchewan to figure out a way to make eating pastry sound refined and cultured.


Thongs. Thongs is a word Saskatchewan people use to refer to flip flops. If you hear a person  from Saskatchewan saying they’re wearing thongs, they’re not oversharing about their skimpy underwear, they’re referring to the relaxed footwear they have on their feet. As easy as it is to be confused, just remember if Saskatchewan folks are talking about their underwear, they’ll refer to them as gotch.


Taking the Grid. This term is referring to driving on grid roads. People from Saskatchewan often prefer the grid roads because they tend to be safer. How is it possible for a gravel road to be safer than a paved one? Sanding the main highways takes road crews hours or even days after a snowfall; the grid roads are pre-sanded for your safety and convenience.

Comedian in Saskatoon.  Saskatchewan Comedian.

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