The Endless Pursuit of Awesomeness.

Comics: The Unsung Heroes

I think it’s fair to say that most of us don’t have the balls to get up on stage and  undress our intellectual selves and souls to an audience of thousands, of whom we respectively know nothing about. Those strong enough to hold the career of a comic still battle for their integrity off the stage with the certain barrage of hate mail and assumed bigotry that comes with their level of liberalism. Some things just aren’t funny to some people. Some topics are brutally off the table for us to utter over the gurgling of the office coffee maker, yet these comics, with all their deliberate intent, have the job of being lewd and obnoxious at the expense of their integrity and their name. We don’t possess the cajones to repeat what they said, nay admit to sharing the explosive, uncontrollable laughter with the rest of the theatre. I’m talking about the connection your conscience makes as the cleverly timed punchline reaches your gut with such obscenity, that your diaphragm can’t help but convulse you into a euphoric sense of tear jerking gaff, fighting to control yourself so you can hear the next punchline.

This is a laughter that we just can’t get on our own, and only our deepest friendships can emulate.

The key element that allows someone to experience an unadultered laughter as such is tolerance. (another post, here) Tolerance is a beautiful human trait that allows a person to cherish and love how colourful and different a world can be, and still appreciate it further by nit picking its details without any agenda or need for seriousness. But this joy, euphoria, and tolerance with the world is under threat. On a surface level, we experience a taste of what life as a comic can be – we expose ourselves to the public world several times a day, to a degree of nakedness that approaches our comfort limits, be it a photo, comment, response, or a stance of any kind. The internet is known for trending and exploding and overreacting on the simplest of things, but what is missing on a grand scale is the investigation of intent. So quick are we to assume that a few words equate to unforeseen bigotry that we daemonize the person of the week until it’s our turn to be that demon. Comics boldly teach us that we aren’t here on this earth to make friends with everyone, and that it’s a responsibility of ours to stay light and quick on our feet as the world turns.

Sure, there is something to be said for maintaining a diplomatic, mature stance. We are aware of how many eyes can see right down to the bottom of the tunnel that is our ideological, political, and social views. I understand that sometimes it is too soon, and sometimes there are sweet spots that hurt like friendly fire, but I don’t believe that we should hold ourselves back for the saviour or the sensitivities of a few. Comedy is a learned, unapologetic, tactical dialogue that can’t cater to an audience of sensitive prudes. That’s why the investigation of intent is so important. Comics don’t get on stage to hurt people. Comics boldly set the bar higher to get a rise out of our intolerance; to abolish our prudence and traditional purities. Their success as a comic builds its foundations on our inability to understand how different the world is, and then shows us how nonchalant we really should approach those differences. Because despite all the endless differences in this world, we are still monkeys in jackets spinning on a rock in space.

To our greats under so much pressure to deliver us the world with just the right amount of taste, reminding us to perceive the world the way it should be seen, I thank you. A life without laughter truly is a dull life.

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