Certain professional comedians believe they have a sacred duty to uncover something funny in every situation ‒ natural disasters and human misfortune be damned.
As an individual who often writes material that is intended to be humorous, I may sympathize with this approach even while cringeing.
When the average man or woman attempts such levity, however, there are dangerous pitfalls. The awkwardness-quotient can rise too high.
The following are signposts that you may have gone too far or misjudged your timing.
(1) Gilbert Gottfried says your comments are tasteless.
(2) Your parents change their surname.
(3) After the words slip out, the sink-hole in your stomach swallows a car and you know you have to move halfway round the world.
(4) Flesh-eating zombies shy away when you approach.
(5) The devil lets you spend all the time you want at his time-share in Kitzbuehel. He’s no longer as keen on skiing since he flew off a steep vertical and his horns got stuck in a tree.
(6) When you die, you still hope to upgrade from hell to heaven by means of a “he was only being playfully scatological” escape clause.
(7) Tornado chasers friend you and mobile-home makers unfriend you on Facebook.
(8) Hearing the song Feelings makes your eyes bleed, causes your hair to fall out and induces immobilizing back spasms.
(9) The glee from do-gooders is palpable as they jump all over you.
(10) The “tsks tsks” from everyone else in the room who thought of saying the same thing drowns out all the other noises in the crowded sports bar.
(11) At one time or another, your employer has sent you for sensitivity training on every day of the week ending with the letter “y”.
(12) Aware that you have flaws as well, your victims retaliate by banding together and naming you this year’s Mr. Low-hanging Fruit.
(13) You sit on this blog entry for a decade, unsure whether you should ever post it.
Before closing, I have a serious message for Toronto’s Mayor, Rob Ford. Please stop auditioning for America’s Funniest Home Videos.
Another of my stories that deals with the outrageous is Shortage of Bullets in the U.S. Goes Critical.