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Where is the sense of humour?

Some people are funnier than the rest. They are easily the soul of any party with their spontaneous wit and sense of humour. Humour attracts people like bees to honey. Yet, increasingly people find it easier to laugh at someone else, rather than with. When the joke is on them, very few have the magnanimity to laugh it off. We are very serious people. Our self-esteem depends on what people think or make of us rather than we ourselves feel about ourselves. Really, even if we view ourselves objectively and come up with a few positive points, we still feel unsure till someone else seconds it. Why is it easy for some to laugh easily while some take even an innocuous comment to heart, their ego bruised very easily?

Sometimes a funny or humourous person is not taken seriously as the rest of the "serious" lot feels that the person has a lackadaisical approach towards life and cannot be trusted with more important tasks. But without them or the spice of humour, don't you think our lives will be such a drab! Think of your daily office routine. There will be at least one funny chap who is always surrounded by people during break times (and even non-break times) to have their usual quota of laugh for the day, to get rejuvenated enough to get back to the boring stuff. The tele-shows (and am not talking about the forever laughing Siddhu and Archana Puran Singh) that have a humourous take on life are definitely a welcome change from most of the other routine tear-jerking ones.

Writing is tough but writing humour/satire is tougher. For some, it just comes naturally. It is as though you are in front of the person listening to their funny anecdotes. Is there any surprise then, blogs or blog-posts that are filled with satire and humour get the most number of visitors? When the going gets tough, it is only a little loosening of yourself, a little laugh, a little joke shared that keeps one sane and helps to get a fresh perspective to life. It's not for nothing that even doctors vote for laughter as the best medicine.

Yet, we keep shunning humour when it is most needed. The recent political row over banning of cartoons in text books just shows how childish and immature we can get. Seriously, you cannot digest a cartoon depicting a satirical view, how do you weigh the enormous responsibility of leading the country on your rigid shoulders, then? "Cartoons in text books can damage impressionable minds. It is for adults and not children". Really? since when humour became an adult thing and whom are you kidding when you say children are far away from truth these days? Sometimes I feel the youngsters these days are far more serious than we were. They are much more in need of good humour and light-heartedness. Yes, sometimes hitting someone below the belt and hurting someone intentionally does happen in the name of humour. Every good comes with its share of bad. Simply because someone cut his finger, one does not throw all the knives out of the window. Satire is just a way of expression and when the humour in it is lost, it is in a sense, a loss of a better way of looking at things. Sadly, for children of today even a sense of humour would come with a price tag.

Comments

  1. I agree to you completely...there are many things happening out there which need their dire attention rather than these cartoons :)

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    1. Priorities are getting mixed up and intentions don't seem sincere..sigh! don't know where we are heading towards..

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  2. So true! We find it easy to laugh at others and get serious when we are being laughed at! And you nailed it with the line- Sadly, for the children of today, even a sense of humor would come with a price tag!

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    1. We really need to loosen up a bit, CD! Life is anyway full of challenges. It seems silly to get worked up over little things.

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  3. Agree, agree and definitely agree :)

    Though I dont know about today's youngsters being far too serious than us...may be they have their own way of humoring which we dont seem to understand?

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    1. Don't know, RM..sometimes I feel kids these days are far more aggressive, possessive and competitive, thereby losing out on the finer nuances of innocence and childhood. Maybe, far more serious parents are the actual culprit????

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    2. oh you meant it that ways...yaa may be..actually I think the kids I know around me, have too much too soon, which means they dont find joy in small little things like the way we used to..you know getting that once in 3 months bourbon biscuit or savouring the taste of once in six months ice cream...may be you ARE right

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    3. yes, because of instant gratification, kids are unable to take a "no" for an answer..sigh! a different post someday :-)

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  4. I agree, Uma! Unfortunately humor is not our forte and much less we can laugh at ourselves:( What an irony! The size of a democracy does not depend on the number of people but the number of people who can take things in stride and learn to laugh it off:)

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    1. "The size of a democracy does not depend on the number of people but the number of people who can take things in stride and learn to laugh it off"
      Yes, what an irony! well-said, Rahulji!

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  5. This is such a good post, Uma. Loved it.

    If we look at a lot of stand-up comedians, they make their living mostly by laughing at themselves rather than at others. And what are we doing? Taking a lot of smaller things in life which ought to be laughed at so seriously. Sigh.

    And as far as kids are concerned, I think the fault is more on the parents. With just 1 or 2 doted-over kids, the parents (we!) try to take offence to even smaller observations by strangers. Some times, the observation could be well-meaning or in lighter vein. Even I am guilty of that. Laughing it off is good. Not just for others but more for ourselves.

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    1. Hey, SnS...long time..how have you been??
      Thanks a lot, glad you liked it :-) And I agree that the parents are at fault. Doted-over kids or over-doted?? if there is such a word :-)))
      I know, every comment about them is taken as a personal comment on our parenting skills, no?

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  6. Uma, you have touched on so many issues in your post, nice build-up! Well our politicians certainly seem to focus on non-issues. I really could not understand why they found that cartoon in particular offensive!! School books are already so drab and dull, used to be in my days!! Politicians are the real stand-up comedians, they have the last laugh!

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    1. Hey, thanks Vibha! Seriously, what was offensive that too after so many years??? Even Ambedkar wouldn't have probably minded :-0
      Yes, text books especially the civics lessons used to be such a drab!

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  7. Although this is not the central idea of this post... 'Writing is tough but writing humour/satire is tougher.' Agreed. Good post!

    First, a professor gets arrested. Now, text books are being modified. Are we seeing a trend here? :)

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    1. Yes, we are seeing a downtrend in the graph of progress..
      thanks, cmus :-)

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  8. Not many people understand humour in the right spirit.. There are people who poke fun at others in the name of humour but take petty jokes on them to heart.. whereas some people do not even mind poking fun at themselves!!

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    1. True, Radhika! Emotions run high and a little poke is enough for the steam to blow out.

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  9. My first visit.Humour in writing should be natural and not contrived.Not all are gifted with this skill.A high sense of humour is necessary not only in personal lives but also in discharge of national affairs.This is the lubricant to make political parties work in harmony without friction.The cartoon issue has assumed political colour to derive some advantage at the hustings.
    Thanks for visiting my blog

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    1. You are right. Humour in writing cannot be contrived. People who write satire are truly gifted and natural.
      //This is the lubricant to make political parties work in harmony without friction// true words of wisdom!
      Its a pleasure to have you here, Sir. Welcome here and hope to see you more often.

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    2. Thank you Uma for your good wishes in my blog
      kpartha12@gmail.com

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  10. Hi Uma,

    Nice blog .. You write well and also have interesting thoughts to express .. Gald to have found your blog :) keep writing

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    1. Thank you so much, Aarthy for your lovely words of encouragement. You've made my day :-)
      glad to have found a new reader in you..keep visiting!

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  11. And talking about humour .. Have you read books of PG Wodehouse ? No one can beat him at it ..
    I get tears in my eyes laughing over his writing :)

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    1. yes, of course. P.G. Wodehouse is the king of humour. :-)

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    2. Aarthy, do you blog too? will love to have a link to yours if you do.

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  12. Am planning to blog soon .. Working on it .. Am having some starting trouble ranging from sheer laziness to the 'Who will read it' fear :(
    Thanks for the inspiration ..
    Will surely share the link with you as soon its out :)

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    Replies
    1. Don't worry about readers. They'll come in time. You have one already :-)
      Looking by your comments, am sure your blog will be a good read, so do not have any doubts :-)
      Its heartening to know that even I could inspire someone!

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    2. Hi Uma,

      I have finally started a blog :)
      Do check it out and tell me if you like it ..
      Here's the link :
      http://amheretowrite.blogspot.in/

      Delete
  13. I have always maintained that laughter is the best medicine , SMILE and the world SMILES with you always.

    Not sure if I have a good sense of humour but yeah i love to laugh a lot.. :)

    and the politcal madness was a CARTOON in itslef, how much of a fool did the ministers make of themselve.. BUT DID THEY.. I think its the public who got taken for a six, as the ministers very cool-ly got what they wanted and had their name too in public and come elections the same leaders will get elected again .. so end of the day its the public who was made to look like a cartoon :)

    Bikram's

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    1. really! the so-called leaders merrily take us citizens for a ride and get away with most absurdities, bad behaviour, bad governance, murder even! I hope and pray for awareness of the right kind among the people of this country.

      A good sense of humour is indeed a prized possession. While some have it naturally, I feel it can also be cultivated by taking life a little easy.

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