Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Confession Tuesday - The Humor Edition



Dear Reader,

It's that time again.  Time for me to confess my deepest secrets or weekly sins.  I feel I've mostly been good, mostly been the person I want to be, but welcome the world of imperfect beings with good intentions.  Let's begin...

To the confessional--


I confess I like my sarcastic self a lot.  I know sometimes I can have a pointed tongue in the name of humor, but I like that part of myself.  In an attempt to try to be a "better person," I realized I was holding back on some of my humor because it ultimately someone was the butt of the joke.  But I realized after a night of Happy Hour appetizers, there is a part of me that is oddly addicted to making people laugh.

~

I confess knowing this about myself doesn't surprise me, my final paper in grad school was a 27 page essay called: INCLUDING LAUGHTER: THE USE OF HUMOR BY CONTEMPORARY WOMEN POETS. I chose it because it was something an editor pointed out to me when I told him I didn't know what to write my paper on. He said, "Why don't you do what you're doing in your manuscript?" Of course, I said having no idea what he was referring to, "What's that?" He said, "You're using humor to deal with serious subjects." Who knew?

~

I confess I like a bit of humor in my poetry and for the first years when I read Elizabeth Bishop I could not quite get her voice and wasn't enjoying her work.  Susan Rich said to me, "Read her work with a sense of humor."  And that was the key to opening the door to Ms. Bishop's work-- she's funny!  I had completely missed that.  I was reading her as if she was a stuffy old poet serious about the world.

~

I confess I just watched the DVD Grown Ups with Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, Rob Schneider, David Spade and the guy from King of Queens.  It could have been just one of those nights where the stars aligned to put me in the perfect mood for that movie, but I thought it was hilarious.  I felt that way after watching The Proposal with Sandra Bullock, the scene with Kevin the dog and the eagle & Sandra Bullock and Betty White around the bonfire were two parts where I really thought the movie was written for my personal sense  of humor.

I also like The Birdcage & Much Ado About Nothing.

~

I confess my five least favorite movies ever are:  Moon over Parador, Jerry MacGuire, Eat/Pray/Love, Fargo, & Babe.  And of all of those movies, I hate Babe the most -- Baa-ram-ewe.  Urgh.

I believe at the time I found Babe to be the most depressing movie I've ever watched. (And I confess I say this knowing it freaks certain people out who don't understand my deep hatred for that movie...)

I confess the celebrities who continually make me laugh are Conan O'Brien, David Sedaris, Sandra Bullock, Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld (still), Chelsea Handler, Ellen Degeneres, Janeane Garofalo, Sandra Bernhardt, Paula Poundstone, & Kathy Griffin. (Oh and in a really odd note, I find Tori Spelling pretty funny, which is weird because I never liked her during 90210).

~

The poets who I think use humor best in their work?  Nin Andrews. Denise Duhamel. Dorothy Barresi. Martha Silano. Barbara Hamby. David Kirby. Albert Goldbarth.


This is the next book on my TO READ list:
  Seriously Funny: Poems about Love, Death, Religion, Art, Politics, Sex, and Everything ElseSeriously Funny: Poems about Love, Death, Religion, Art, Politics, Sex, and Everything Else

Quite a few of the poets I mentioned above are included in it.

~

I confess one thing that gives me the most humor in the day is my iPhone autocorrect which to me should really be called: "Wrong Word Chooser."  If you have an iPhone or most Mac products, you might know that when you type something, it tries to guess the word you are typing and help you out.

Well, sometimes it's wrong, VERY VERY wrong.

For example, my husband texted me to ask where I was and when I went to type, "Aurora Avenue."  It assumed "Aurora" was a mistake and chose the word, "Autistic," so yes, I was on Autistic Avenue.  It also has chosen "orgy!" when I typed "urgh!"  (I think my husband was quite excited when he received that text, then to find out I was actually just annoyed because I had forgotten something at home.)

I am not the only one who finds the humor in these bizarre messages we end up sending the people we love, there's a whole website devoted to it called Damn You AutoCorrect!  Watch out though, word lovers, you could spend a whole afternoon there...

~

I confess my family (both the French-Catholic & Irish/English side) has always used humor to get through hard times.  For me, humor is both a defensive-mechanism and an optimistic belief that if we can laugh at troubles and struggles, they can't get us.  If we can find the humor in the worst parts of our lives, then we win.  Or we die laughing.  Either way, at least we were smiling...


Amen.









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3 comments:

Kathleen said...

Seriously Funny looks...well, seriously funny! And you have a lot of fun with Autocorrect!!

Gayle Sliva said...

Both your paper and that book sound interesting. I was a part of a writer's workshop for 10 years, had been bringing in plenty of humorous poems for critique, and finally one man said, "You know, I was re-reading some of your work the other day and it suddenly hit me that you use humor in your poems. You are really a funny lady!"

Of course, I was insulted that he'd been reading my poetry for 10 years and had never noticed the humor, but then I thought it was funny.

Maureen said...

I decided to be un-serious and wrote a poem about clothes hangers for today's One Shot. You can imagine the comments!

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