He who laughs lasts…

Ever since the whole “meow means meow” joke was made a few weeks ago I’ve been thinking about comedy, what we make jokes about and why.

A few people were very upset about the joke, claiming it did everything from take a serious issue far too lightly to qualify as rape apology. People seemed to ignore the fact it was a joke, instead deciding to just be offended. I’m not going to say you have to approach comedy the same way as I do, but being perpetually offended really isn’t helpful.

Instead of accosting people for the jokes they make, perhaps it would be better to try see why they make the jokes? People joke for so many different reasons, about so many different topics. Making the assumption that someone is joking about something just to make light of that subject is unhelpful.

Anyone reading this has every right to disagree with me 100% but as far as I’m concerned there is no topic or situation that cannot be joked about. It may be cruel to joke about someone’s specific situation, especially if there’s a chance that person will find out about the jokes, but that doesn’t mean you’re not allowed make the jokes. There is no right to not be offended, even if we should try not to offend or upset each other.

I’ve been criticized on occasion for having a “very dark, slightly disturbing” sense of humor. And I’ve no problem admitting that my sense of humor is a lot darker than a lot of people’s. I’ve made jokes about horrible, evil situations. I didn’t do it just to get a laugh, I did it because if I didn’t make jokes I’d end up killing someone. Comedy can be a coping mechanism.

If my ex-girlfriend didn’t make jokes about the situations she had to deal with, from her verbally abusive father to her sexual assault, I truly believe she would have killed herself. If she didn’t force me to make jokes about the same things I truly believe I would have killed her dad and the man who assaulted her.

One of the podcasts I listen to on a regular basis, Cognitive Dissonance, talks and jokes each episode about many horrific situations that have occurred in the world. I once heard one of the hosts say that if he didn’t joke about the stories they cover, he’d cry about them.

I’m not going to tell anyone they have to make jokes about something but I’m also not going to let you tell me that I, or anybody else, can’t joke about something. That’s not how free speech works.

Stay strong!

I don’t know what’s wrong,
At least not just yet,
I do know you’re strong,
One of the strongest people I’ve met!

Right now things may not be great,
But they will improve,
To heart break we can all relate,
Whatever you do we’ll approve.

Please continue to smile,
This is just a little lag,
Rest up for a while,
Then continue to fly your nerd flag!

Try to smile.

Darkness falls but you’re a shining light,
You are warmth on the coldest night,
Your future is so very bright,
Happiness will soon be in sight.

Don’t be sad, upset or mad,
You are so very wonderful,
You should be so glad,
Your heart is beautiful.

All your dreams will come true,
All your desires will come to fruition,
This is a promise I can make to you,
Because you’ve plenty of life ambition.

I would…

I would sacrifice so much for your happiness,
Even my own,
I would do so much to end your sadness,
Even turn my heart to stone.

I would give anything to stop your tears for a while,
Even if that meant going so far away,
I would go so far to see you smile,
What else can I say?

Should you be ashamed to read “Young Adult”?

No.

It’s really quite simple, you should never be ashamed of what you’re reading. It’s you that’s reading, for whatever reason, the books. You shouldn’t draw shame or embarrassment from reading.

With that said, there are many reasons you probably shouldn’t read “young adult” themed books, many of them were raised by @GenXMedia. Obviously “young adult” books are not written to appeal to a more mature audience, that’s evident from the name of the genre. They are written to appeal to people in an age range of 13 to, some say, 21. They don’t employ the same themes or level of complexity that books written for a more mature audience do.

Adults and teenagers are naturally at different stages of development, and require different stimulus to continue their development, but surely reading anything, whether it be Twilight or Shakespeare or anything in between, is more beneficial to them than not reading at all?

Yes, maybe adults reading and driving the fandoms associated with the “young adult” genre may have a negative effect on how publishers and authors treat the genre. And I agree that it is unfortunate this happens, but literature is literature. It is forever evolving. If the current “young adult” genre collapses under the weight of the adults reading it, it will meld with a more mature genre and be replaced by another version of “young adult”.

You should really be reading literature written to appeal to the demographic that you are part of, but you should never be ashamed of what you’re reading.

This was promoted by a twitter discussion based, mostly, around this Slate article.

Kill yourself!

Sadly some people still think it’s perfectly acceptable to go around telling others that they should kill themselves. And I may not be in the best place to say it’s wrong, I have previously(to my great regret) told a person to “do the world a favor and step out in front of a bus”. I was wrong to say this, regardless of what kind of verbal torment they sent my way.

That being said, I feel it’s important people realise just how harmful telling someone to kill themselves can really be. Even if you argue “oh it’s just strangers on the internet” it doesn’t justify it. The fact that you’re telling a stranger to kill themselves means you don’t know what they are dealing with in their life or how a person telling them to commit suicide may affect them.

I know from experience that had somebody, even a stranger, told me to kill myself a few months ago when I was in the depths of my depression I likely would have done it. I know that sounds stupid, after all who cares what strangers on the internet think you should do? But the thing is, if someone is in a mental state where they are considering killing themselves then they aren’t thinking logically. If someone is suicidal, telling them to kill themselves is just reinforcing the idea in their head that they should die.

People like @Maymaym, who recently told 16 people in 1 night to kill themselves, could be doing massive harm to people they don’t even know. Please don’t end up like Maymay, thinking that what you say online is harmless, you have no idea how you’re affecting the people you interact with.