A couple go into a restaurant and order a meal. When the waiter brings out their soup course they notice he has his thumbs stuck in both bowls. Being English, they are reluctant to complain, so they shrug and laugh it off.

“Would you like anything else?” the waiter enquires. “We have some excellent lamb shank today.” They both order lamb shank, so the waiter goes off and comes back with two plates of lamb shank. Once again they notice that the waiter’s thumbs are in the gravy. Again, they let it go.

“Would sir and madam like any desert? Our special today is apple pie,” says the waiter.

“Fine,” they reply. The waiter returns with his thumbs stuck in the custard. By now they have just about lost their appetites but are still reluctant to force a confrontation.

“Would you like some coffee?” asks the waiter. They nod, and he returns with his thumbs stuck in the cups of coffee.

By now the man can no longer restrain himself: “I say, what the hell’s going on here? Every time you have come to this table you’ve had your thumbs stuck in our food!”

“I’m terribly sorry, sir,” mumbles the waiter. “I’ve got an infection and my doctor told me to keep my thumb in a hot, moist place.”

“Why don’t you just stick it up your arse?”

“That’s where I put it when I’m in the kitchen.”