Sunday, September 22, 2013


In the fuss and bluster that always marks an election, for those forced to participate, an old school friend who only recently reconnected on Facebook, fairly asked the question "I thought I was supposed to be the comedian". Now never mind the politics, which played out where it did, I was simultaneously intrigued about this question.

Now I know my raison d'etre and don't find any need to tread on the toes of the very crowded field of stand-up. And my writing will only touch on humour when that happens as part of the process. But, since blogs are the place to ruminate on such things, I did want to scrape against the barnacled belly of  the whale of a time called Comedy.

The first (and only) joke I wrote was an academic exercise - literally. We were asked to write a short piece on one word themes before semester commenced in Writing for the Web, and one of those was Joke.

I think I did better with that than with the other pieces and mainly because I didn't want to deconstruct or dissect the joke. I thought it would work better as a creative writing exercise (and this subject was very firmly writing praxis) to actually write a joke.

I don't know whether this was still the stage where I was getting inspiration for my other writing by wildly juxtaposing imagery and then letting the result speak, but that's how I tackled this task. Now the incongruity could be as stark as a table for two in the fallout shelter (which had less resonance a decade on) but then where's the laughs? As much as I like black humour, that wasn't what I wanted to do here. Perhaps because I had been writing so much about failed meritocracies and bizarre concatenations. I wanted dumb fun to be front and centre.

So a flea and a nightclub.

It still reads as a quality piece of comedy writing and I think that's because there's neither the need nor the desire to lay down any message or interrupt the laughs. Just follow the flea.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home