This Is Twittering, Episode 30: A Funny Thing To Say Edition

It’s time for a special edition of This is Twittering: Meta-commentary Digest.

A few months ago, I started making jokes on Twitter with this construction: “If [something happens], I think a funny thing to say would be, “[some punchline—usually a groaner].”

I like this construction because it’s a cop-out. I’m not saying the joke is funny; I’m just saying that it would be funny. But even if the joke isn’t funny, the overall statement—because of the way it’s phrased—becomes funny because then it’s ironic.

Now you know all my secrets.

Anyway, here’s a bunch of ’em:

When someone asks you three questions in a row, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Geez, what is this, Three Questions or something?”

See, instead of 20 Questions. I think would really be funny.

If you’re reminiscing with someone about a really loud party, I think a funny thing to say would be, “A good time was heard by all.”

This wouldn’t really be that funny, but the idea of “reminiscing about a really loud party” is funny to me.

If you were talking to someone who said they were an “expert”, I think a funny think to say would be, “Really? Why’d you quit?”

See, because of the “ex”. I think this would really be funny.

If somebody asks if you’re married and you’re not, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I’m one of the least married people I know!”

I like this one because it doesn’t make sense, yet it’s completely irrefutable.

If you were really frustrated, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Good news, everybody: I can’t take it anymore.”

This is funny because that’s not really good news. On the other hand, it might be.

If someone tells you that asparagus makes your urine smell funny, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I’ll believe it when I pee it!”

As an offhand remark, this would be amusing. But here I’m suggesting you premeditate such a remark, which would make it less amusing, but the idea that someone actually would plan it is the funny part. See? Cop-out.

If you have to ask someone how to spell a simple word, I think a funny thing to add would be, “…*I* know, but I’m asking for a friend.”

This is another one I’d like in real life. See, it’s funny because, if you knew the spelling, you’d just tell your friend without having to ask someone else.

If you run into someone you don’t like, but they’re stylishly dressed, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Lookin’ good, asshole.”

This isn’t so much funny as it is true.

If you’re getting acupuncture, I think a funny thing to say would be, “What a prick.”

Quiet at first, but then loudly and repeatedly.

Thinking about this situation makes me laugh. The idea of mumbling (and then shouting) things while someone sticks needles in you is funny on it’s own, but I think this is the perfect thing to mumble (and then shout).

If you have to tell someone about a murder, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I have some good news and some murder news.”

This is funny because it’s weird.

If you were annoyed about something, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Who can I sue about this?”

This would be funny, because lots of people apparently do think this without saying it. Which is why it’s funny.

If you’re giving someone the option of how to be hanged, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I have some good noose and some bad noose.”

This isn’t funny.

If someone tells you that something is invisible, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Oh, I see.”

I think this is funny. Because of the metaphors we live by.

If you had an identical twin named Adam, I think a funny thing to say to people would be, “You don’t know me from Adam!”

This is funny because it’s true.

If you’re at a Rolling Stones cover band concert and they ask for requests, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I demand Satisfaction!”

No.

If you were Conlan, I think a funny thing to say would be, “If I had a nickel for every #MidnightDump, it would be a joke about two things.”

This is a joke about me. And also it’s a “funny thing to say” joke. It’s about two things.

If you were really adamant about changing your hair color, I think a funny thing to say would be, “I want to try dyeing or die trying.”

I like this one.

If you wanted to encourage a performer before a show, I think a funny thing to say would be, “Break a leg or I’ll break it for you.”

Positive and negative reinforcement1. I think it could really work. Truth in comedy.

For a psychic at an optical illusion exhibit, a funny thing to say would be, “I know what you’re thinking, but it’s not what it looks like.”

Get it?

That concludes this extra-special episode of the thing where I talk about stuff.

  1. Encouragement is not actually positive reinforcement. []