You must be joking and variations.

Which of these would you not find yourself using and why?

  1. I says [sic] you’re joking
  2. You’re flipping joking!
  3. You are joking me?
  4. You’re joking.
  5. You are joking, aren’t you?
  6. You’re joking, aren’t you?
  7. You gotta be joking!
  8. You’re joking, of course.
  9. You have got to be joking
  10. You’re not joking?
  11. You have got to be joking me.
  12. You’ve got to be f*cking joking
  13. You have to be joking.
  14. You’ve got to be joking!
  15. You must be bloody joking!
  16. You’ve gotta be joking mate
  17. You must be f*cking joking!
  18. You’ve gotta be joking!
  19. You must be joking.
  20. You’ve just got to be joking

Which of these films haven’t you seen and why not?

  1. His Girl Friday (1940)
  2. Stalker (1979)
  3. Network (1976)
  4. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)
  5. Dolce vita, La (1960)
  6. Mou gaan dou (2002)
  7. Young Frankenstein (1974)
  8. The Searchers (1956)
  9. Samouraï, Le (1967)
  10. Lola rennt (1998)
  11. Haine, La (1995)
  12. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)
  13. Great Expectations (1946)
  14. Quatre cents coups, Les (1959)
  15. Fa yeung nin wa (2000)
    16 Ikiru (1952)
  16. Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
  17. Rocky (1976)
  18. Barry Lyndon (1975)
  19. Hauru no ugoku shiro (2004)

What has that list got to do with learning and teaching variations of the phrase “you must be joking”, Ralf?

It’s an allegory.

Great. Now, can you answer the thread question?

I’m afraid you didn’t get the allegory.

Who would? This is like one of those “private joke among friends” moments, one of those “I’m native and you are not. You will not understand” moments. Don’t you just hate those moments?

Why ‘native’, Molly?

Why not save space, Mr Moderator, and explain the allegory.

Hi Molly,

I hope this test helps.

All the best,


Why would that help, Ralf?

You godda be kidding!

Good addition, Amy.