I’m through talking about how feminists don’t get my jokes. I find it amusing that while I’m often attacked for my use of the word “pussy” as an insult, no one ever attacks me for my use of the word “dick”. In truth, the origins of the pejorative nature of “pussy” have more to do with cats than female genitalia, but I digress. That’s all behind me now. I got into an argument with a couple of idiots on the comments section of one of my favorite websites yesterday over this, and when I pointed out that “pussy” is no more sexist than “dick”, someone retorted that since vaginas are strong and can spit out humans, he’d rather be called a pussy than a dick. If I’m sexist for calling wimpy men pussies, is this moron admitting that he’d rather be a woman than a man? I wouldn’t. It’s not just because I like being privileged and not having to worry as much about being raped. I enjoy watching sports, making crude jokes, and generally not giving a shit about my attire. I’m generalizing, of course, but what fun is life without a little humor?
There is a general lack of self-awareness among most of the feminists I know. I’m not presenting this as a universal truth that applies to all feminists; I’m just saying that the ones I know tend to react more defensively to my admittedly-un-PC sense of humor than, say, the Jews or Asians I know. I’m a terrible person. My favorite comedians are all the unapologetically envelope-pushing ones—Carlin, Hicks, CK, Chappelle and Rock—but I really don’t wake up in the morning and say, “I think I’ll offend someone today!” I just say what’s on my mind, and people yell at me for it. Comedy cannot function without a hint of self-deprecation. The person making the joke must be aware that not only is what they’re poking fun at ridiculous, they are ridiculous as well, and that life, in general, is ridiculous. Monty Python took shots at everyone because they just didn’t give a shit. The result is comedy than transcends time and place. Many of the Python’s sketches were directed at then-contemporary political figures, but even though nobody remembers those guys anymore, the sketches are still hilarious.
“Not giving a shit” doesn’t mean that you can’t have a point to make. On the contrary, the best comedy is often that that highlights the flaws in certain social or cultural mores. Nobody loves The Onion more than I do. I even own their atlas, Our Dumb World, in which the writers systematically take aim at every single nation in the world. Sweet, appallingly tasteless aim (their Africa section is particularly squirm-inducing.) I’m not enjoying life right now. I’m unemployed, flat broke, single, lonely, and in just over a month, I’m heading off to grad school to rack up tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of debt. Is that funny to you? I think it’s hysterical. I’m so sick of being pitied. I don’t need anyone’s sympathy or even advice. I’ll settle for being amusing. My life is shitty. I might as well have fun with it.
Nothing kills comedy faster than self-righteousness. It interests me that the vast majority of quality political satire is produced by liberals. There don’t seem to be too many good conservative humorists out there. Trey Parker and Matt Stone have written some funny material, but frankly, I think they’re overrated. It isn’t just that much of their “satire” is lazy (Michael Moore is fat and hates America? Wow, thanks!), but that it’s so mean-spirited without ever having much to say. I’ve only watched a handful of episodes of South Park. Even so, the general idea behind that show seems to be, “If it exists, we’ll shit on it. Literally.” The Simpsons, from what I’ve seen (I’m a little behind on my animation education), has a much gentler worldview, one that says, “If it exists, we’ll mock it. Good-naturedly.” Life is short. I really don’t have time to waste on a bunch of overgrown cocky teenagers who think that the proper way to be funny and relevant is to be as crude and anarchic as possible. Some things do matter, guys. Not everyone who tries to do anything is a tool.
I should add that I’ll probably see The Book of Mormon someday. Every person I’ve heard from who’s seen it assures me it’s not only gut-bustingly funny, but surprisingly sweet. Sounds great. I’m not exactly the sentimental type; I just have little use for anything that points out problems but doesn’t offer a solution. It’s part of the reason why I will love Jon Stewart until my dying day. He’s a smarter commentator than most of the so-called “news anchors” out there, yet refreshingly unpretentious. And he still believes in something. There is a lot more to being a comedian than knowing how to act silly. What do you want people to take away from your act? It’s much better that they take away a question than an answer. After all, what is humor for if not to remind everyone how ultimately fucked we all are? Life’s a bitch, then you die. It’s not necessarily so depressing.