Fall 2016, Uncategorized

Kacper Niburski




Yellow banana on a grey background / Ingram Publishing

Yellow banana on a grey background / Ingram Publishing

“Knock, knock.”

“I’ve heard this one a million times, Bob.”

“No, not this one. It’s different. Come on.”

“Alright. Fine. Who’s there?”


“Why would a banana be at my door?”

“Because it’s part of the joke.”

“But how would a banana knock?”

“Well, I guess the same way we do, by bobbing back and forth.”

“Sure, but what would make the banana bob?”

“I don’t know.”

“This is important stuff to know. If there’s a banana at my door that somehow knocked, I’d be more interested in the banana itself. Like, for example, how big is it?”

“It’s a regular banana.”

“Yellow, green, black—is it rotten?”

“It’s just a simple, fresh banana. Imagine a banana and then that’s it.”

“I usually eat tiny bananas, so I’m imagining them.”

“That’s not the banana in the joke.”

“So there is a specific banana, then. How can I get the joke if we are imaging different things?”

“Come on, Frank, just go along with it.”

“Okay, sure, but again—how did the banana knock?”

“It just did.”

“What is the door made of?”

“I don’t know, man.”

“Well, how thick is it?”

“Why does this matter?”

“Because if you’re saying a banana—a regular, handheld yellow banana—produced enough of a force to be heard, then the least I should know is the type of door I have.”

“Fine. Hardwood. About the same thickness of a two-by-four.”

“And the banana made an audible knocking noise?”


“See, I don’t understand. Did someone throw the banana?”

“No. I’ve told you three times already—it just knocked.”

“But things don’t just happen. That doesn’t make any sense.”

“It doesn’t have to. It’s a joke.”

“No, no. It does or else I won’t get it and then it won’t be funny and isn’t that a joke’s point?”

“Fine. Sure. I guess.”

“So you’re going to tell me how a regular banana knock-knocked then?”

“Ya. Let’s just say it was standing up—”

“The banana?”

“Yes, the banana. It was standing up—”

“By itself?”

“Yes, by itself.”

“Who put it there?”

“No one.”

“So the banana got there by itself?”


“You’re telling me the banana made it to my door by its own means?”

“Why not?”

“So, Bob, this is a motile banana.”


“This is an evolutionary wunderkind. It’s a self-moving banana that can balance and stand erect.”

“Okay …”

“And with its mushy, moving interior, it somehow also evolved the ability to forcefully knock.”

“I guess.”

“This makes much more sense now.”

“Okay, sure, can I continue now?”

“Wait, Bob, wait. Didn’t it also answer ‘Banana’?”

“I guess …”

“Oh my god.”

“What is it, Frank?”

“This is a sentient banana.”

“Excuse me?”

“This inexplicably moving banana can also speak. That means it has some cognitive ability as it not only uses a door with all the common societal expectations of it—knocking politely, waiting until an answer is given—but it can mimic speech. It can form words, and more importantly, recognize what it is: a banana. No more. No less. A banana that walks, talks, and knocks.”


“Bob, I wouldn’t want a conversation. I would have the responsibility of calling NASA, universities, everyone and everything. Who knows? This banana may be the first alien.”

“Frank, it’s just a banana.”

“That does everything we do, if not better. A little thing can make such a loud noise. Imagine what else it could do. Do you think it can dance?”

“It’s a banana, Frank.”

“Can it dance, Bob?”


“Yet it has mastered our social constructions, hearing my answer and developing a response.”

“Okay …”

“So, maybe it can also hear rhythm in music. I wouldn’t put it past the banana.”

“A dancing banana?”

“Exactly. It would put a new meaning to the phrase banana split.”

“Isn’t that a dessert?”

“It is, but you bring up an important point, Bob.”

“I did?”

“The most important, I’d say. I can’t believe I’m so stupid.”

“What do you mean?”

“Here I am answering the door when it could …”

“It could what?”

“Want revenge.”

“What the hell do you mean?”

“I mean if it is really as smart as you seem to suggest …”

“I didn’t suggest anything, Frank. You have this whole time.”

“No, no, you told the joke. I’m just extrapolating.”

“Fine. Sure. Go ahead.”

“And if it is as smart as you say, with its penchant for abstract thoughts, social norms, and speaking patterns, it might realize what we have been doing to all the other bananas on Earth.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Bob, we eat them whole. We eat the banana’s people. We put them on our damn ice cream.”

“Ya, but—”

“But nothing. This banana might strike against us and I might be its first target.”

“No. It’s just knocking.”

“How do I know?”

“Because it’s knocking on your door.”

“But robbers can knock too before they plan to jump me in my own home.”

“It’s a banana. Not a robber.”

“And yet, it’s so much more than any banana before.”

“So what then?”

“Well, I’m at my door, right?”


“And the banana has already knocked, right?”


“And I’ve answered?”

“Get to the point already, Frank.”

“Well I’d be incredibly cautious. I’d look through the eyehole and seeing nothing—because it is a regular, small banana at the base of my door—I’d be immediately suspicious. Scared even.”

“So what would you do?”

“I’d have to play it smart. I’d cough and puff my chest and before I opened the door—who knows if I would anyways—I would say, ‘Banana who?’”

“And the banana?”

“I’m not sure. If it’s harmless, it may repeat its name because that answers the question.”

“I see. And if it’s not?”

“If redemption is in its blood, or glucose, or whatever, then it may employ the same tactic. ‘Banana,’ it’ll say in a cold, hard manner. The banana may be a master of subterfuge after all.”

“And if it said that then?”

“I’d keep sharp, keep the banana on edge. Show them the human spirit with a, ‘Banana who?’”

“Smart, Frank.”

“I think so too, Bob.”

“So, what then?”

“It’s the banana’s move. Either it can peel away, or keep going.”

“I see.”

“Exactly. Who knows—it could very well knock again and we’d be back at the beginning.”

“So, Frank, you’re saying it’s the banana’s show and we’re just monkeys in the middle.”

“Yeah, Bob.”


“Well is right. Good we got that out of the way.”


“So what was the joke anyway?”

“I don’t remember exactly.”


“That’s alright. It’s over now.”

“I’ll say.”

“Well after it all, I’m glad at least it wasn’t an orange. Imagine that.”


Kacper Niburski is a twenty something year old pretending he’s thirty who writes like he’s fifty about things that happened when he was ten. He’s been published in Stoneboat Poetry, Ars Medica, and others.


hoto credit: Banana. Clip Art. Britannica ImageQuest. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 25 May 2016. Accessed 17 Oct 2016.