Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Humor is over-rated

It's invaded all the important areas of life. I can avoid the snarkfests on VH1 and the E network. I grit my teeth as it seeps into political coverage. (This is non-partisan: i'm as sick of Dennis Miller and the Dean video as I am of AL Franken and Arianna Huffington). I find the whole Wonkette thing lame.

But the breaking point for me was when it invaded sports. I started to avoid the football pre-game shows this season. Lame jokes and lamer skits have displaced reporting and analysis. Howie, Deion, Terry and Boomer crack themselves up but it just leaves me cold. And why have unfunny comics on to joke about something they know little about? If you can't fill an hour, just do a half-hour show and stop trying to be a comedy club.

As Aaron points out, humor is hard work and few do it well. Most of us should just not try.

I know, i know. The fool gets to say things to the king that no one else can. But look around: no king, no secret police, no Inquisition. We don't have to speak obliquely. Why waste time with a cheap joke when we have the ability to really say whatever we want.

Much of the joking around is a weasel's game anyway. It lets the smug but superficial camafloge their ignorance while retaining center stage. They don't have to defend what they say-- they were just joking. But they still are smarter than you.

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