Underneath my yellow skin

Humor is subjective

Humor is so subjective and difficult to explain. If someone does not find something funny, I rarely bother to explain it. When my mother and I went to movies, she would need me to explain certain things to her. It was frustrating because I would miss the next minute to several minutes of the movie while I was whispering to my mother. Eventually, I came up with a rule that if it took me longer to explain something to my mother than it took for them to say it, I would not do it.

The worst was humor. American human is so different than Taiwanese humor. I gave up on explaining jokes completely because it was nearly impossible to make the cross-culture connection. This is not ragging on my mom (for once!), by the way. Humor is just very demo-specific.

For example. The Brits seem to be much more casual about making child molestation jokes. They have a word specifically for an adult (let’s face it, man) who is a pedophile–nonce. And they’ll toss around ‘pedos’ casually like it’s nothing. At least in the RKG group, which may be skewed   towards laddy humor. Honestly, it’s one of my least-favorite things about them, but I chalk it up to cultural differences.

On the other hand, there’s a RNG Chalice  Dungeon called the cum dungeon because they code is CUMMM then three other letters. Krupa didn’t even want to say it and they bleeped it out. Even Gav was grossed out by it. Krupa had been teasing it out for a few episodes, and when he finally said what it was,  I blurted out, “That’s it?!?”  I was expected so much worse than that. I wouldn’t even blink at the word ‘cum’.

On the other hand, I hate poop jokes. A lot. My Taiji teacher likes to make them once in a while and say we’re all two-year-old children at heart. Nope. Not me. I find them sophomoric, distasteful, and, well, gross. I’m not offended by them, but I would be just fine if I never hear another one again.

On the other hand, I can tell a sex joke with the best of them in the right company. From the old hoary ‘That’s what she said’ to elaborate jokes about what fits where. There was a time in my twenties when I told filthy jokes all the time. I had been indoctrinated as a child with a rabid form of Evangelical Christianity, so I firmly believed I was going to hell if I had sex outside of marriage. It was impressed upon me that having sex for pleasure was the worst thing I could do (especially as a not-male person). Until I got married, of course, and then it was magical with angels singing and playing their harps.

Needless to say, when I first had sex…well, wait. Let’s back it up a minute. I really liked making out and fooling around. By the time I hit college, I called myself a TV–a technical virgin because I had done everything but PIV sex.

I fell in love in college. I wanted to have sex with him, but put it off for several months. Then, I finally decided I was ready. I was 21 and horny as hell. When we had sex, it was fucking amazing, no pun intended. I had never felt anything like it in my life. I enjoyed it so much, I just wanted to do it all the time.

That’s when I stopped even trying to be a Christian. They had lied to me all my life and emphasized so often what a horrible mortal sin it was, that I would spend eternity in hell if I did it. And it was the best feeling I had ever had

Here’s the thing. Telling a lie of that magnitude, basing your whole religion on it, it’s like the Wizard of Oz. Once you pulled back the curtain and saw the charlatan, there was no putting that illusion back together again.

Once I was disillusioned, I started cracking sex jokes all the time out of defiance. I thought I was being edgy, but I was really just rebelling. Which I’m fine with, by the way. Now, I’m more moderate with my sex jokes. I’ll still crack them, but I don’t feel the need to do it constantly.

Now, I’m more about the morbid humor. I’ve always had a dark sense of humor, and now that I’ve died twice and come back, it’s positively morbid. I was talking to K a few weeks after I got back from the hospital, which meant I still had drugs coursing through my veins. I said that I had the idea of having a t-shirt made. It would say ‘Once, Jesus died and rose again” on the front. On the back, it would say, “I did it twice.” K found it hilarious as did my other friends, but I would not do that in real life.

I do not want the far right after me. It’s a joke and it’s funny as fuck, but I know how it would be received.

Another factor of humor is who is making the jokes about whom. I can joke about me dying until the cows come home–and I have. That doesn’t mean that other people are allowed to do it, though. A family friend who is an asshole and doesn’t know when to shut the fuck up. He’s a heart doctor and he told my brother that I probably wouldn’t make it. Which is fine. But, then he said to me not even a month after I left the hospital that most people left by the back door (heavily implying in a body bag). He thought that was hilarious–me, not so much. And, again, it’s fully because I don’t like him nor know him very well. If, say, my brother had said it–it would have been just fine.

That’s the thing with humor. There are so many factors as to what will be made funny or not. Who says it, when, where, and in what context. That’s why I’ve realized that it’s better to err on the side of not making that potentially awkward joke than having to backtrack hastily from an ill-timed joke. I will admit that I’m not as careful when I’m alone as it’s hard for me to offend me. I find me hilarious, which is good, but I’ve learned when to keep my mouth shut. More or less. Sometimes, I slip, but thankfully, it’s less than it was before. I’ll continue to tell crass jokes to me because at least I can appreciate them.


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