Learning a Little About Myself

July 6, 2011

Most of my friendships are based on humor.

And this could be very bad…

Tonight, I came to this conclusion after having a rather lengthy argument with some friends, (that I was totally the winner of, by the way) about morals and meanings of words. The details of the argument don’t really matter but it eventually led into a conversation about offensiveness and humor and how they can or can not override one another (a whole ‘nother post). While we continued our arguing I said something along these lines:

“I’m friends with you, (nameless friend), because you’re a funny guy. I’m friends with you, (another nameless friend), because you’re funny. I’m really only friends with people that I share a sense of humor with. I can’t think of how we would be friends otherwise.”

Believe it or not, faithful reader, in “real” life I’m not considered very funny.

I know, I’ve just shattered your world.

You might know me as a guy who is only trying to make you laugh. And that’s true. I am. Most of what I write is done in jest or even with the goal of being seen as funny. I’m even trying to inject humor in this post even though I’m being quite serious right now. If I’ve commented on your blog, 9 times out of 10, I’m trying to get you to giggle. Look at the keyword in that last sentence though: trying.

It’s just what I do. I think that’s how I know that people like me. If you laugh, then we share a sense of humor, and now the ice has been broken. If you laugh with me, (or at me), then our chances of becoming friends increases.  This is how I became friends with everybody I know (as far as I can remember). They made me laugh, and then I tried to make them laugh, and then we just kept doing it. Next thing you know, I’m in their wedding.

After I explained this to my friends tonight, they seems a little shocked and offended. They told me that they didn’t believe that humor was as important as I make it out to be. They felt like they had developed friendships with me, and others, that are not based on humor.

That blew my mind. Is this not the common way for friends to be made?

Apparently not. 

Now, I said in the argument tonight, “I’m only friends with people that I share a sense of humor with; and probably wouldn’t be otherwise.” Isn’t this a particuarlly foolish thing for somebody to say when he is, in “real” life, not considered to be THAT funny of a guy?

This question has made me think about my social skills for the past few hours. There could be something wrong with me. I might have conditioned myself against making closer friends because I avoid most emotions with feelings. I could even a brain tumor that’s causing me to go crazy, slowly, causing moments of hysteria…

Now I feel like I’m in a Woody Allen film…

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m funny sometimes. In some circles of friends I’m sure I’m looked at the one who is silly. In this group of friends that I am arguing with though, I’m not the funny one. I’m on the bottom of the totem pole, so to speak. With these people, I’m only considered humorous in the sense that of a kitten trying to climb out of a cardboard box. It’s cute to see their futile attempts, but hey, at least they’re trying.

So, why do I do this? Why do I base my relationships on comedy?

It probably has to do a lot with my mom. She always seemed to be able to make anybody laugh. Seeing that led me to believe that people laughing = smiling people = happy people. Not the best formula, but it seems to work out most of the time. I also do this because, I guess, I just like to laugh. People who make me laugh are people that I want to be around.

I’m sure there lots of other factors, but for our conversation here, it will work for now.

So how could this be a bad thing? 

Well, for starters, does this mean that I can’t become friends with anybody that isn’t all that funny? I’m thinking that the possibility exists. Which makes me wonder about what my standards for friends are. Do I look at people for who they are, or just how funny they are? We can all admit, not all funny people are good people.

Also, I’m single, and what does that mean in terms of me finding my future wife/girlfriend? If she’s not all that funny, but still a great person, would I just let her walk in and right back out of my life? That doesn’t sound very appealing to me.

Can this be a good thing?

I guess comedy isn’t every really all that bad. I mean, what if I tried basing relationships on my love of Dr. Who? I would probably be strapped looking for friends. And then we would talk about Dr. Who so much that it would just become so boring that I would consider watching shows like Stargate, just to get away from them.

At least there is some sort of commonality in humor. I rarely meet people that don’t have a decent sense of humor. So I’ve got that going for me…

I’m typing all this here because I really want to leave a reminder for myself. Maybe it’s a reminder for you as well. I kind of treat this blog like a journal in many ways, so maybe one day in the future I’ll look back on this and smile. I’ll say, “Man, I really learned something important right there, and I grew up a little bit. Look at my life now.”

Or maybe I’ll just say, “Look at all those typos.”

One of the most confusing things about the whole night was this. When I asked them “If humor isn’t the base of our relationship, then why are you even friends with me?” they didn’t really give me a satisfactory answer. Nobody said, “Because you’re trustworthy.” or “You’re just a friendly guy.”

They just made a bunch of jokes about me thinking I was funny in some way.

How am I supposed to interpret that?

Until tomorrow,



6 Responses to “Learning a Little About Myself”

  1. I think maybe the reason they didn’t have an answer as to why they’re friends with you is that friendship is an indefinable thing. It encompasses more than one character trait. For example: I’d say that most of my friends hang out with me because I listen well, care, am knowledgeable and fun. My best friend is my BFF because her attributes are those that I lack. She’s humble, vulnerable, always vibrant, and unashamed. But neither of those answers is complete or accurate. So, maybe if you and they haven’t thought much about it before, it’s difficult to answer because friendships is too complex?

    Also, I doubt they would be your friends if they thought you untrustworthy.

  2. goldfish Says:

    I’m with you. All of my closest friends are hilarious. Humor is #1 on the list of things that will make me want to talk to someone more than once. Well, humor and creativity and skill with firearms and I am fond of beards… Anyway, humor is very important. The reason I keep coming back to this silly blog with more red moons than entirely necessary is that it sometimes make me laugh.

    I think maybe your friends tolerate you because you’re funnier in person than you think you are. Either that or you own a pickup truck.

  3. @ Kathryn: You make a great point and I agree that friendships are made up of more than one quality. I trust my friends, and I’m sure they trust me, even if we don’t say it to one another. I was simply trying to show that they didn’t give me answer, only that they made jokes about me, which perpetuates that problem at hand. They are so funny that they can avoid serious questions by cracking jokes. I guess I’m also surprised that you can say things about your friendships liking your listening skills and your caring, because me and my friends do not discuss these things. Ever.

    @ Goldie: I’m thinking I should feel both insulted and appreciated in your comment about my silly blog sometimes making you laugh. But I’m going to count that as a compliment. So thank you. I’m much more distracted by the idea that the red moons on here are more than necessary. What do you mean? How can you have too many red moons? As you scroll down, you get the rare experience to experience multiple moon-rises and moon sets…

    You should be thanking me.

  4. Are all of the friends you’re talking about guys? Because guys tend not to discuss quite the same things as us ladies do. :)

  5. goldfish Says:

    Insulted and appreciated is the correct response.

    Thanks for all the moons.

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