Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Funny, Funnier, Funniest


Mark Twain said that American humor differed from humor in other countries. In England they told stories about something funny that had happened.

“Oh look! The Lord of the Manor lost his pantaloons.” Or something else equally hilarious.

But Americans, he contended, could tell any story and make it funny.

“Oh look! The Lord of the Manor lost his pantaloons. Hey aren’t those Lady Bluebell’s pantaloons, and aren’t they pink? I have a pair just like them.”

My personal favorite form of humor is called self-deprecating. “Humor in which performers target themselves and their foibles or misfortunes for comic effect.” Essentially, these are people who can laugh at themselves. It’s adorable. It’s charming. It’s smart. It’s mature. It’s confident. It’s down right sexy. And it’s the kind of humor where you can use the word foible. What’s not to love?

People who can laugh at themselves are highly intelligent. It’s a scientific fact. Probably. Sure. Sure. I bet there’s a governmental study costing ten trillion taxpayer dollars proving it—or not. Probably.

Okay, let me illustrate:

I was born when tinfoil on the rabbit ears was high tech and Jiffy-Pop was kitchen magic. The 21st century has been a bit of a challenge for me. Oh, who am I kidding? I still think that if I open the computer I’ll see typewriter keys.

This backwater attitude amuses my children, causing them to push and nag and drag me into the world of multi-media or, as I like to put it, multi thorns in my side to make me wish I was eating Jiffy-Pop popcorn while watching Laugh-In. But I digress.

So, in I jump: Facebook, Goodreads, Pinterest, Twitter, Linked-In,,, Writing. Dumbbunny, and my very own website. Even though, the learning curve on each has caused me stress, hot flashes, nose bleeds, and happiness leakage. But, in I jumped.

Recently, I contracted a common cold viruses better known as the Vlad the Impaler Snot Fest. I was bed ridden for two weeks and weakly for two more weeks after that. It allowed me to be quite active on my Facebook page. Okay, I updated my status every time I sneezed and wet my pants—it was a lot.

And my children (grown) MADE FUN OF ME for over posting, or as Adam put it, “I like the post that said her pneumonia had contracted influenza.”

I never said that.

I said that I couldn’t smell, hear, taste, or breathe and that all hope was lost and that they should save themselves. Leave the casserole on the doorstep. Oh wait. There weren’t any casseroles from my children.

This story is an example of self-deprecating humor. Foibles alluded to include: My age, my dopiness, my bad children, my lack of tech savvy, and the wetting of my pants or pantaloons, depending.

Linda (A Little to the Right) Zern
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