I wore a client event tee shirt to a national conference the other weekend, and I didn’t realize people would answer the question on the shirt. (The question: “does this shirt make my brain look big?”)
- No, but it makes your butt look like hell.
- I can’t see your brain.
- It’s either your head or your brain, but yes, one looks big.
- That’s a very yellow tee.
Regardless, the tee shirt got a lot of attention from its target audience – national public media fundraisers. What it showed me is that humor always has a home. People like and appreciate a good chuckle.
Often, I find myself on the edges of appropriateness with my own humor. Sometimes, I get over the edge because of my own personal experiences. Since I am an avowed non-bigot and work hard to be tolerant, I feel like I can own jokes that are bigoted and nontolerant.
Examples: I was born in redneck country; rednecks are fair game. My best friend in high school was black; black people are fair game. My daughter is handicapped; the handicapped are fair game. I work with men; those of low emotional IQ are fair game. I am a middle-aged woman; young, ripped, sweaty, shirtless men working on highway crews are fair game — no, sorry… distracted and derailed. (See how much fun it is being a non-bigot?!)
I figure annoying the 2% of absolutely humorless people I meet is worth making the other 98% chuckle. (That’s assuming that I run in circles where there are few Republicans.) See, I love Republicans; Republicans are fair game.