A joke’s a very serious thing
~Charles Churchill, The Ghost (1763), book iv, line 1386
Laughter is a funny thing. Seriously.
It can be a boon, a relief, or completely humiliating.
A truly good comedy takes advantage of all three.
Yet, you’re still left with the undeniable fact that someone will not find it funny.
This years nominees for Outstanding Comedy Series are proof of another fact about comedy, good comedy is smart.
Mindless entertainment has no place here, because above all comedy should make you think, or have thought at one point in your life.
Television writers, a glee club, a contemporary family, a paper company, a government office, and a group of physicists (and an engineer and an actor) all find a home in the top television comedies this year (as determined by the nominators).
It’s a broad range to say the least. Yet humor is abundant in each…yes, we’ve watched all of these shows…some more than others.
So why do we like comedy so much?
I could launch into a long-winded academically driven speech about the foundations of comedy, it’s cathartic foundation, and the benefits of seeing our own foibles in others.
But I won’t.
Comedy is the art of the unexpected, the truly ridiculous, and the unexpectedly sentimental.
It can be profane and graphic or innocent and sweet. It offends it, it reveals, but it usually makes you laugh.
Because at the end of the day I think we’re all looking for a chance to laugh–laugh at ourselves (the good and the bad), laugh at the ridiculousness of it all (the good and the bad), or just laugh.
And really that’s the best thing television can do for any of us, give us something to smile about…followed up by your local cable news.
Happy Earth Day!
This day which celebrates all things environmental is celebrating its 40th birthday.
And it’s sure come a long way in those 40 years.
It may surprise some to know that the original organizers of Earth Day were extremely anti-business.
Of course, now this certainly isn’t true.
It seems like every single industry has jumped onto the “green” bandwagon.
Just walk through any grocery store and you’ll see reusable shopping bags; chip bags that biodegrade almost instantly; and probably a stuffed creature of some sort that comes with a pro-Earth book.
It’s an encouraging sign if you try not to think about the carbon foot print of those plush toys and their Earth Day literature.
A tip for those who get blinded by the “green” label: just because it’s made from recycled, soy fiber doesn’t mean you need to buy it.
Earth Day (and being ”green”) is about appreciating this one planet we have, and doing what we can to keep it healthy.
In other words: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. I bet you can guess which one of those “R”s businesses might have a problem with when it comes to selling their products.
No one ever said this was going to be easy, but it’s a good thing to think about as you celebrate the 40th Earth Day.
I’d like to leave you with some words of encouragement courtesy of Dr. Seuss’ the Once-ler:
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It´s not.”
Or, if you prefer “The Office” brand of encouragement:
“Recyclops will drown you in your over watered lawns. Humans are terrible for the environment.”
Now, go forth and reduce, reuse, recycle.
…also, Happy NFL Draft Day! Go Rams (don’t mess this up)!
More on the commercialism of Earth Day: Earth Day=Big Business
…just one more reminder to take care of our one and only planet: Recyclops