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2013/07/30

TMI: That’s So Funny I Forgot to Laugh!

Laughter is the best medicine.  It’s good for what ails you.  Being funny or clever used to be very important to me, but I rarely laugh these days.  I’m not sure when it died.  But I do know that if you are lucky enough to find someone that makes you laugh and you, in turn make them laugh?  Hold on to them, treat them well – they are a precious commodity.

I should have married Don Knotts when I had the chance.

TMI QUESTIONS:
Questions designed to reveal Too Much Information
Link: http://tmiquestions.blogspot.com/

That’s So Funny I Forgot to Laugh!

Do you have a good laugh? Do you like it?

I have a goon laugh.  I used to really enjoy it.  But then, as I grew up, people made fun of it, so I am less likely to let myself go to that extreme.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time something made me laugh so hard I goon-ed out.

I don’t like that laugh ( I do, but can’t admit it).

I liked my Dad’s laugh.  He laughed like ‘Popeye the Sailor Man’.  Not on purpose, that was just how he laughed.

And I love laughing, just as much as I enjoy a good cry. I think both keep us rounded and human.  It’s a matter of balance.  

Do you have a sense of humor? What kind?

I finally developed one in my mid-thirties – a sense of humor about myself, anyways. 

Before that people would tell me I was always ‘so serious’ – and I was. My few attempts at humor before that point were always misfires or got me labeled as ‘weird’.  In high school, the only people that ‘got me’ were the dudes I played with in bands.  They thought I was freaking hilarious, because I would touch on inappropriate things.

One of my idols at the time was Iggy Pop of the Stooges.  Of course I was naïve and had no idea that most of his madness was chemically induced.  David Bowie was also a huge influence – and he was considered ‘serious’ at the time, as was most of the music that I was attracted to that was not pop, dance, funk, or R&B. 

This same group of guys fell into a habit of, rather than going on dates, holing up in this little homemade studio one of the wealthier dudes had and we would record these sketch shows – radio programs, I guess.  We all developed a catalogue of characters (my favorite was ‘The Gutter Rat’) and would improvise different story lines.  Sometimes we would call the local radio station in Austin, MN and we would play stuff out on the air.

So, one would think that would have prepared me to be ‘funny’, but it only prepared me to be ‘weird’.  Being ‘weird’ is a hard road.  Rather than be thought of as odd, I opted to be taken seriously, which meant I was big on discipline and had a tough work ethic.  My ‘weirdness’ is probably one of the reasons I remained in theatre as long as I did.  It was easy to hide in those big black boxes, disappearing behind words someone else wrote.

My comedy style on stage was always over-the-top.  My idols for stage comedy were Jerry Lewis, Danny Kaye, and Don Knotts.  Growing up, I thought they were the bomb.  Needless to say, not every director agreed.  My talents were not always appreciated and I ended up being reigned in an awful lot (think Imogene Coca, Red Skelton, Carol Burnett).  Still, when in performance, I would go with my instincts and definitely get more than my share of laughs.  I destroyed a lot of productions that way, in particular a dinner theatre production of ‘Last of the Red Hot Lovers’.  I looked like a young Vincent Price (jet black hair and beard), but behaved like a loon.  In those days, we took our Neil Simon pretty seriously (the new Shakespeare). Of course now I realize that most of his work was nothing more than sitcom fodder, so in hindsight, no harm / no foul.

My inability to articulate my sense of humor is one of the reasons I prefer writing.  I’m not a think-on-my-feet kind of wit.  With writing, you have the opportunity to self-edit and hone your material before presenting it.  In the real world, I frequently fail to succinctly communicate my intent and therefore tend to end up being misunderstood.  While it’s hardly failsafe, writing gives me a better shot at hitting the bulls-eye on occasion.

How important is a sense of humor in a mate?

If you spend any amount of time with me, you better have a great sense of humor, because I tend to be rather dark and that requires balance.  Only one of my partners managed this quite well.  He could always poke holes in my rather bleak outlook and help me see how ridiculous I was being.  Sure, I got angry with him for it on occasion, but, again, in hindsight, he handled me perfectly. 

I like clever people.  I enjoy being around them.  Make me laugh and you will win my heart and loyalty (and maybe a trip inside my pants). 

I had a very good friend (20 years’ worth) and we never failed to crack each other up, usually doing a riff on ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’ or some other play. And then one day the laughter stopped. And I still don’t know why.

Are you attracted to one type of humor over another?

Yes.  I enjoy acerbic, sardonic, cerebral stuff.  Clever is very attractive.  Intellectual humor makes me feel smart.  Snarky stuff holds appeal for me, too, but it’s limited because it tends to be so caustic.

But I’m not a snob.  I see value in the prat fall antics of Jerry Lewis. However, I’ve never been able to grant Jim Carey the same regard.    

Crude and gross stuff rarely does anything for me. 

Can being really funny make an "unfortunate looking" person sexy and attractive to you?

Sometimes.  I think Don Knotts is sexy as hell, until he joined ‘Three’s Company’ and started wearing mumus.  

I actually think dorks are hot.  And I don’t mean nerds.  A dork with a clever sense of humor will have me reaching for their junk every time. But dork does not age well.  I guess dorks morph into goons after a point.  Which means, I guess, I was a dork before I was a goon.

P.S.  Goons need love, too.

Fart jokes are_______!

Stupid. 

I dislike them and keenly dislike that type of humor.  Any time you see a fart joke it’s because the writers have run out of ideas or never had a viable one to begin with.

My dislike for fart jokes probably has to do with my older brother.  Growing up, he was gross and mean (wah, wah, wah), using his bodily gasses as a weapon. 

I fucking hated him for it.

Do you embarrass easily?

Yes.  Which is why for so long I had no sense of humor about myself.  None at all.

Now, I’m much better about seeing the humor in embarrassing situations, or situations at my expense, but it still may take me a moment. 

I have always focused on the ‘why me’ aspect of an embarrassing situation, rather than the, ‘of course it’s me’ of a situation.  Having been a goon for most of my life, one would think I’d have recognized the importance of validating the latter and enjoying the laugh, but I can be rather thickheaded when it comes to altering my perceptions. It took me a long-ass time to come as far as I have, and, much to my chagrin, I still have my less than enlightened moments.

Yes, I’m a big fucking baby. (wha, wha, wha)

Do you tend to wear silly t-shirts? Do you have a favorite?

I have a collection of silly t-shirts, or ones that I consider silly.  They sit, neatly folded on a shelf and I never ever wear them.  But I buy them, usually used, at rummage sales, or they are given to me as gifts. 

My favorite is one of Stewie Griffin from ‘Family Guy’ modeling a diaper and says ‘You know you want me!’  I have never worn it.

I do have a Piggly Wiggly grocery store tee that I wear out to bars on the rare occasion that I go.  It is black with a white logo.  On the front is the familiar pig’s head logo and beneath, it says ‘Piggly’, and on the back is a pig’s behind with the word ‘Wiggly’.  It never fails to get me a hug, a kiss, or a tug. I love the shirt, partly because the grocery store chain has no idea how that tee translates in the gay world.

The truest to character silly tee that I own?  In a kind of horror/splatter-script it reads: “I live in my own world. I like it here and they know me.”

Do you make faces or strike a pose when having your picture taken?

No.  In fact, I rarely smile at all.  When I do, I resemble Sheldon (‘The Big Bang Theory’) attempting to be happy for someone.  Yes, it’s truly gruesome to behold.  

Which is the funniest movie you've seen?

I enjoy the unintentionally ridiculous.  The Mystery Science Theatre 3000 series is a blast, for the sole reason that many of the films they skewer were made with the intent to strike fear or wonderment in the hearts of the audience. 

I enjoy the early films of John Waters.

Oh – ‘Zombieland’!  Loved that movie and was kind of hoping for a sequel.  See ‘Zombieland’. That is my kind of apocalypse (sans Twinkies).

Do clowns scare you or make you laugh?

Real clowns scare me (the way drag queens used to).  I no longer fear drag queens, though on occasion I may refer to them as scary clowns. 

The physical comedy of clowns has never appealed to me.  I do love watching them chase people.  They are kind of like zombies.

I love creepy, cheap, plastic Halloween masks from the 50’s and 60’s – the kind held in place by an elastic string.  The more faded and beaten up, the better.  But then, I enjoy a good scare.

Bonus
What's the funniest thing to happen to you while having sex?

I’ve seen other people’s wallets, cell phones, and blackberries fall in toilets while fooling around in mens rooms.  I don’t recall laughing at the time, but I can see how that could be construed as funny (or, maybe, merely unfortunate).

I’ve walked away from encounters wondering where the used condom ended up, only to discover it stuck to the center of my back.  That might be thought of as funny (or merely gross).

A rather amorous dude once stuck his tongue up my nose and began licking out the inside of my nostrils.  I think I broke out laughing and told him to knock it off (that was gross).

I get giddy sometimes right after sex, especially if it is really intense, or if there were good poppers involved and the sex was really intense (but that’s more gleeful than funny).

I guess I take my sex too seriously.

*Sigh*

What a goon.
























3 comments:

O!Daddie now at http://smokeyandme.typepad.com/ said...

Interesting how we all express our humor differently. I can do an hour-long stand up monologue and have the crowd rotfl, but I cant write worth a sh*t.

You a goon?? "as-if"!!!

whkattk said...

Laughter is so very important - especially if you deal with a progressive illness. But I've always been an upbeat person. I pretty much always have a smile on my face.
I have a pretty sick sense of humor... Juvenile humor makes me want to barf - so things like "Dumb and Dumber" (for me) are a huge waste of time and money, though I don't begrudge those who do enjoy it.
Sense of humor is important in a mate. My wife has a wicked sense of humor - maybe that's why we've stayed married for (OMG!) 27 years: we make each other laugh.

Ray's Cowboy said...

We used to have a Piggly Wiggly here a very long time ago. I would love to have a shirt...
Thanks for letting us I on part of your life.

Hugs
Ray