Saturday, August 7, 2010
The Importance of Being Silly
Humor and cultural differences often collide. The humor in Canadian culture, as frequently elsewhere, is often associated with self effacing speech and action, general silliness, and irony. The nature of my postings often include such an attitude. Being silly is serious stuff since it both reveals and conceals , mocks with a gentle rejoinder, and allows the author to remain attached to an unidentifiable point of view. I had some Asian comments on my various posts, but I was unable to read them. The few comments that have been translated for me, display what appears to be an identifiable difference in perception. That is, my humor is treated with an earnestness it does not deserve. I wonder, is the Asian character given to knee slapping, belly laughing, frantic foot stomping , aisle rolling, juice depleting, humor? I think not! Silliness may be seen as outlandish! What about irony? Is that seen as deceptive or sarcastic, rather than for it's own humorous parody? Is self effacement in humor considered degrading? Is there a cultural gulf in the way humor is expressed by the western and eastern parts of the Pacific Rim? I would be very interested in opinions as to what constitutes the difference, if any, in humor. You should know that an elderly eclectic gentleman brought up on material such as The Three Stooges, Laurel and Hardy, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello, and Beyond the Fringe, would not be confined to writing exclusively in earnest! The Importance of Being Earnest is silly!