Haumich und Pflaumich sitzen auf dem Baum. Der Pflaumich fällt runter. Wer sitzt noch auf dem Baum?

Could you please translate this joke or whatever it is?

I also heard a phrase by non-native speaker "mein Pflaumich". Is it acceptable? And then what does it also mean?

  • 8
    Word play. What is the answer to the riddle and what would the asker do then?
    – Stephie
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 6:51
  • 2
    @Stephie In this Southern version, the joke actually doesn’t work well, because the answer could be “Der Haumich!” Definite articles in front of names considered harmful.
    – Crissov
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 7:28
  • 2
    @Crissov - not my version. And speaking from experience, the article will not keep a 5yo from pinching his friend.
    – Stephie
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 11:44
  • Same question as Sag mal »Haushalt« ohne »s«.
    – Jan
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 14:49

1 Answer 1


It is a "trick riddle" with the sole purpose to get the answerer to say something that the asker can "hear" as an invitation to pinch, poke or beat the unsuspecting victim. Especially children find this funny.

Haumich, while seemingly used as a name, is a contraction of "hau' mich" (= beat me). Another variant of the joke starts with

Zwickmi (= pinch me) and Zwackmi (likewise) gehen in den Keller...

Pflaumich is a nonsense word, probably choosen just for the rhyme with Haumich, so "mein Pflaumich" does not make any sense in standard German. I can not exclude a regional term though.

  • 1
    I see the "Pflaume", too, but to me it's nonsense. If someone from a different region chimes in with a use of "pflaumen" as a term of inflicting pain, I'll be glad to include this in my answer.
    – Stephie
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 7:12
  • 1
    @Stephie it is a not existing word, but it is derived from Pflaume, which makes sense, because plums fall from trees, while "beat me"s don't fall from trees that often xD
    – Armin
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 7:13
  • 2
    I wonder if “hit me” would be the better translation.
    – Carsten S
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 7:41
  • 3
    @Stephie: ich kenne "jemandem eine pflaumen" durchaus als "jemandem eine runterhauen" - aber das Wort "Pflaumich" klingt trotzdem ein wenig befremdlich, und ich habe zuerst an die Frucht gedacht, vermutlich in Kombination mit dem Baum. Aber aller Wahrscheinlichkeit nach soll das ja der Witz sein :)
    – Gerhard
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 8:19
  • 1
    Pflaumich is just to obscure the real intention, and to let the asked person think in the wrong direction, because he/she tries to accociate with fruits then.
    – äüö
    Commented Apr 11, 2016 at 12:55

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