Friday, July 13, 2007

Thoughts on humor

got some hate mail from my blog today. like, you're obviously a terrible mother and a horrible friend and you enjoy mocking other people's suffering.

it pissed me off, for a lot of reasons.

but the biggest one...I think the biggest one isn't the obvious one.

When something sux, like sux really, really bad...I don't know how most people deal with it. But I know that *I* try to laugh about it. I try to make jokes. The fact that I make them doesn't mean that I don't understand the seriousness of the thing I'm trying to make fun of (therapists, post-partum depression, feelings of worthlessness, other stuff like that). It means that I'm trying to *laugh.*

I believe in laughter. I believe that people *need* to laugh.

But here's the rub...Every funny person at some point is going to accidentally offend someone. Maybe hurt the feelings of a dear friend without meaning to. Even when they're actively *trying* to be unoffensive. I know that I try to only make fun of myself, or my kids who can't read and thus won't get hurt by it. And yet...I offend people. At least I did today.

So I want to hear your thoughts.

Is it better to try and make people laugh and offend some people?

Or is it better to keep your jokes to yourself? Especially in somewhere like a blog that's visible to the entire world?

We need to laugh. But at what cost?


Little Thunder said...

I offend people. I don't want them to be offended, but they get insulted. The ones that know and love me stick around, while the rest vanish. I'm happy with my closest friends and will always say what I think and feel, sarcastic or not ... I just hate worrying about what I'm supposed to say. To be me is to be NOT like everyone else.

3sEnough said...

I say to continue with what helps you get through the hard times.

LAUGH IT UP!!! There is not enough laughter in the world, in my opinion, and I have offended others on more occasions than I can count. However, the ones that laughed with me are the ones that are closest to me (including my husband and children). I have friends from my childhood days and new friends from recent years. These friends are the ones that are closest to me because they let me be me and love me for who I am - no judgements.

You are a wonderful mommy and a dear friend. Hugs to you and I'll stand with you and laugh (we cry enough during the hard times).

Hilary said...

I think people that are going to take offense will not matter what. Note: I was not offended! I think that you should laugh at hard situations...I do! I think it makes it easier. And, again I am soooo sorry that I cause all of this. I am still shocked by peoples' responses. So sorry!

k said...

Hil, it is sooooo not your fault, so stop apologizing!

Dapoppins said...

laughter is better. Always. i am sure I offend people too, but that happens. They get over it.

Love your blog here. I dont know who sent you hate mail, but I can't find any reason for it, and I searched.

You look way better in a skirt than I do. WAY BETTER.

Audra said...

Blog hate mail. Interesting. I think that means you are doing something right.

Opposition in all things.

You find an outlet, a safe place to let your life be seen as open as *you* want it to be seen - and then whamo slamo - hate mail.

Key word *you*. Your blog, your life, your outlet. What do you think? I can tell you (and have)that I love your blog. It is the most refreshing thing I read. It is real. My blog isn't real and most aren't.

Most of us like to write about the good and the very bad (mostly to know we are not alone). You write about life, the good, the bad, the funny, and let's not forget the bodily fluids! YOUR BLOG ROCKS!

Kimberly said...

I hate when I read a post too late and can basically just say ditto to what everyone else said (especially Audra!).

It's a two way street in my opinion. On the one hand, we need to be sensitive of the feelings of those around us, on the other, they need to make an effort not to be hypersensitive and take offense at the drop of a hat.

We know a couple...she's snarky, he's hypersensitive. Innnnnteresting combination.

I love your honesty. It was seeing that that made me click my "Sub With Bloglines" button. You're awesome!

Barb said...

Blog haters are part of the blog package, I guess. Sad. But I agree that first of all, a little humor never hurt anyone. Secondly, humor is always so personal and I guess, so is what people find offensive. So how can you ever be "safe" in your humor? You never can. But that doesn't mean you stop trying to laugh at life (instead of crying, screaming and beating your head against the wall.)

k said...

Hate mail is *totally* part of the blogging package. Annoying, yes. Earthshattering, no.

You guys have been much too nice to me in your comments! I swear I wasn't fishing for compliments! Just wanting to talk about humor and stuff. That being said, I can't say that they *didn't* make me feel all gushy inside. :-)

Thanks, everyone!

Reid said...

Good art should offend, and challenge. That's what makes it art. If you're not doing that, you're not creating art, you're just creating idle conversation and Hallmark cards.

You can be Richard Pryor, or you can be Jeff Foxworthy. It's a choice everyone has to make.

I figure if I don't get hate mail about once every couple of weeks, I'm doing something wrong. Don't worry about it. Keep most of them laughing, and ignore the rest.

Love the blog!