I had never heard the old “our boss treats us like mushroom” joke. (They keep us in the dark and cover us with s#!t, in case you haven’t heard it.) The coworker who told it to me just said that our managers treated us like mushrooms, laughed hard at his own wit, then refused to elaborate. It was like he didn’t understand that a joke has two parts. Instead of trying to explain the joke to me when I didn’t get it, he thought he could make me get it by repeating what he’d already said only louder and slower. It gave me insight into what it must be like to speak a foreign language and have to communicate with an American tourist.