Laughter is the Best Way to Cause Concern

I’ve admitted to a quirkier sense of humor in the past. Still, I always assumed my observations of humor were mostly in-bounds. I’m marginally morbid. Hardly ever profane. Rarely inappropriate. Never crude.

Yet, one of my coworkers admitted to her reassuring the others on the interviewing panel that I was being funny. She understood, but wasn’t certain they did.

Clearly, since I’m now writing about this, I’m stupefied. Bemused. Disconcerted! How long have others not understood that I meant what I said to be taken lightly? How often does this happen?

Am I funny?

I find myself funny…

I guess I should’ve listened when my mother described my sense of humor as ‘strange.’ Or, when a few blogging friends admitted surprise at my ‘wit.’


Have you had this happen? What did you conclude? Have you started attending Amusers Anonymous meetings as a result?

Photo by Elle Hughes on

Β©2021 Chel Owens

62 thoughts on “Laughter is the Best Way to Cause Concern

  1. I have a kind of sarcastic humor and never intend to hurt anybody’s feelings, thinking that they should understand I am just joking around but sometimes a person will get hurt feelings.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. It’s always a risk, humor. Or speaking in general. And a gut sinking feeling to learn you have been “explained” by one more accustomed to the less accustomed.
    I’ve been told I’m funny. I’m not. But I find humor in a lot of things and it’s nice when people laugh with me.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. πŸ˜€ That is a vital part of my humor: finding amusement in things others do not. I believe you are funny, although I’d aim for true ‘witty’ since it’s a higher, cleverer funny.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My world, totally. Of course 8m fine even as I stare at the horrified expressions and open mouthed astonishment at my latest stunning piece of wit. I realise I’m l8ke strong chilli or rich truffle chocolate and some people don’t have the constitution for my genius so have to self ration.. I’m also still married after 36 and 7/8th years. I th8nk the two things are linked.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My world, totally. Of course I’m being funny even as I stare at the horrified expressions and open mouthed astonishment at my latest stunning piece of wit. I realise I’m like strong chilli or rich truffle chocolate and some people don’t have the constitution for my genius so have to self ration.. I’m also still married after 36 and 7/8th years. I think the two things are linked.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Good comedy has to be a little bit confrontational. One needs to tiptoe along the edge – and accept the constant danger of falling into the abyss. The best laughter is that which comes a bit uncomfortably because the really funny things in life are often about personal stuff that we don’t fully understand. So you have to accept that some people will be offended. These are the people who the joke is about.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Years ago, in what I call “another lifetime”, I started off as an air traffic controller in a large en-route facility. Most of the people used to tell me to lighten up, to not be so serious all of the time. And they thought that a lot of what I said was just, well, something must be wrong. There were a couple of people who realized that 90% of what I said was a joke, and the more that people told me to not be so serious, the more off the wall I’d get with my attempts at humor. Sigh. At least those one or two people got it… So, yes, I understand. I just think we have a unique way of seeing the world, and all of those so called “normal” people are boring πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This thought always springs to mind for me! The biggest compliment someone can give me (above all else) is that they think I’m funny lol.. I don’t know why.. I prefer it over a compliment re: looks, smarts, etc… A part of me does try to be funny so of course I want my efforts to be recognized but then another part of me tries to bring a different perspective, a funny perspective to very serious situations to lighten the mood.. I guess this is where I either “get into trouble” or question my humour lol.. Now I’ve just deduced it down to catering my humour to the people I’m around! Lol

    Liked by 2 people

    1. … which reminds me: a counselor I spoke with admonished me for giggling during session. She thought I used laughter to not take the situation seriously, but I sincerely felt I was accepting it and moving on to see the humor in it.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. The thing that comes through in most of the comments is we need humour, wether its frivolously light or dark as the gallows shadow. It’s a sad life if you can’t find something to at least smile about.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. my husbands sarcasm and wit can often be taken seriously-that has happened to me too-the kind of laugh or silence prompts me to say β€œyou know that was a joke?”

    i’ve tried to stop the sarcasm, especially to elementary age grandkids.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That sounds like us. Kevin is never a mean sarcastic (he thinks he’s never sarcastic, which isn’t true) and the kids are getting mean sometimes in their teasing. It’s better to be sincere with young ones.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I think anyone who has been around you or your writing for any length of time gets you are a kidder. It’s one of the things I enjoy about your personality, Chel. The same is true about most funny people. Most of us gravitate toward those with a good sense of humor.

    Humor is the great elixir to most situations. I came to realize over the course of the career that parents were often nervous when they came in for parent-teacher conferences. I’m pretty good at telling a story, and I’d often lighten the mood with a funny story about their child. The parents would laugh and suddenly be more relaxed. It was nearly a foolproof method.

    There are always going to be some situations where humor may seem inappropriate (a funeral comes to mind, but I’ve also been to Celebrations of Life, where people were working through their grief through laughter.) That seems healthy to me.

    When we used to visit my mom in her assisted living center, there were situations where I couldn’t help but laugh afterward with my wife. My mom used to want to introduce me to everyone when I was visiting, but she couldn’t remember anyone’s name. We stopped to say hello to one other resident and probably talked for ten minutes. Mom and I took a walk and came back fifteen minutes later. We went through the same song and dance again with the same person. It was brand new to both of them, and it was as if the previous conversation never took place. How could I get irritated? They weren’t doing it on purpose. Making fun of them would have been cruel, and yet it was a comical situation.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I like your sense of humor, Chelsea. You have a dry wit that always makes me smile. Personally, I don’t think I’m funny except by accident or when I’m writing limericks!, so if someone says I am, it doesn’t compute. Keep up the humor, my friend. It’s a great approach to life.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I think I have a sense of humor but others don’t always get it. I don’t get theirs so it’s OK.

    I’m also not an “out loud” laugher. And I don’t like that look someone makes after they’ve said something funny that I didn’t (over)reach to. And then you feel bad so you have to offer up a fake laugh before they really become offended and never say anything funny to you again. And I’m also not a fake laugher so the best I can handle is a smile.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh, great point! Smile-humorers are the toughest to read so someone would definitely need to know you well.

      I’ll admit that I’ve worked on laughing more authentically over the years. Then, of course, I get odd looks for at least snickering at instances others fail to see as funny. :/


  13. I recall when we first met your humor was anecdotal to pop culture reference’s I wasn’t aware of, making me take it too personally and not realizing you were being funny..but I suppose that’s all on me.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’d forgotten about that! I think that is a case of both parties; I needed to realize that not everyone would find that funny and you needed to tell me. πŸ™‚ The most important thing is keeping communication open.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I have an off beat sense of humour too. Part of it is because I’m Australian, and we all have a weird sense of humour, but some of it is all me. I’ve learned to reign in my humour until I know people well enough. Or should I say until /they/ know /me/ well enough. -sigh- It’s a conundrum. 😦

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Well, I learned that you can do everything you can to be a people pleaser, but you lose yourself trying to figure out what they might want. The only person you can please is you. They’re not worried about how to please you, but trying to convince you that your worth is in pleasing them.
        So forget them and just be the best happy you can ever be! πŸ₯‚

        Liked by 1 person

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