Hello, coffee lovers and avid readers! Welcome to Olive’s Corner at Olive’s Café, where you get insight on thoughts of life.

Here’s my opinion on jokes: I love jokes, but there are times when to tell a joke, and when not to tell a joke.

During my childhood, I was always made fun of for my physical appearance, and I couldn’t help but cry as they do so, and they laugh at my reactions. It was such a pain in the ass because kids would laugh at my expense and the jokes were never funny to me But as I got older, and even learned what jokes are, I realized that jokes about my physical appearance did hurt, but nothing is funnier than how foolish those kids looked when they joked about me.

Even if I were to look back at that time, my reaction was valid, but to now think about it, I did notice that they used the same jokes every time. Isn’t using the same joke actually stale? Oh yeah, they were comedians, alright (insert eye roll emoji). As I got older, I learned in college that jokes hold some truth in them, even pointing out the obvious. I even learned after college that comedians are great storytellers, and when I connect the dots, it all makes total sense.

When I hear a joke, or even tell a joke, the intention is to not hurt the person nor telling it at the wrong time. That’s why there’s the phrase “read the room” exists. Comedians like Robin Williams, Gabriel Iglesias, Richard Pryor, and Kevin Hart share stories and exaggerate on their characters in their stories. They point out behavior and actions and even go over-the-top dramatic to make it funnier. Even when I watch satirical shows like SNL and All That for kids; they all do it, and when I watch actors during interviews and films like Ryan Reynolds doing his quick wit humor. They’re funny because they’re colorful with how they choose their words and amplify their body language.

At first, I would be offended when someone made fun of me, and they would get annoyed when “overreact.” To my defense, I just didn’t like being made fun of. Now, I learn that if I don’t find it funny, I don’t react. It actually gets funny when people get annoyed when I don’t react to their jokes (trust me when I tell you, I’m doing them a favor with my genuine reaction). Sometimes, it’s good to not react to certain jokes, but other times it’s also good to speak up and tell the person it’s not funny. The tone and context of your response depends on you completely. I can’t tell people how to react or respond because that has to come out of their own will. Even when I react or respond, I’m aware of the consequences. For other people, however, I can’t speak for them.

When comedians tell jokes, we usually have different reactions: some people would laugh, others not so much. It even gets to a point where the joke backfires and results in backlash because the joke is offensive. A good majority of the time, we get offended because the joke is about physical appearance, a serious situation, someone’s misfortune, health, and other circumstances. Honestly, jokes like those are simply not funny, no matter who makes them. Jokes do hold some truth in them, but we also must understand boundaries. Everyone goes through personal issues, but jokes shouldn’t be used as an excuse for how we talk to people. What’s becoming so common, especially on social media, is people on the internet targeting both celebrities and other strangers and harass them, but they play it off as “jokes”. The reactions, however, tell a different story.

The “jokes” that are being told online about the celebrities and other fans happen a lot, especially within film, television, and music. (Insert clown emoji) Then, their “jokes” are blown out of proportion when people start calling them out on their comments. The different reactions that I see online is what’s funny to me because here they are getting any kind of reaction, and the initiator of that comment is going viral, whether it’s funny or not. There are people who play it safe and report and block the accounts, people who ignore them completely, people who have this tone in their text that sound similar to a parent or any adult telling a child to behave in a civil manner, and people who fight them as if they’re brawling back and forth in the ring. Whichever way they react towards these people who wish to be half as funny as a birthday party clown, the end result usually gives them more power because they’re getting the reaction they want. And they want to be internet famous, of course.

Not everyone will ever care about the next target, but I feel like to stop someone with their outrageous antics, we have to use wit and nip it in the butt. Since it is social media, it should be fun, so start coloring your responses!

What I mean is be petty without the intentions of hurting that person. What stops us from being petty is when we can’t tell what may be funny or what may hurt. Therefore, I advise to learn from the comedians; learn how they use words and learn where their targets are. Understand what’s forbidden or banned, and what’s allowed. Be quick with your wit, even use puns, farce, or become satirical. Call out their behavior and actions, but don’t use hurtful comments. If they come back and tell you that what you said is not funny, then ask them, “Why? Because your favorite celebrity didn’t say it?” I can imagine them just sucking their teeth and rolling their eyes as they smash their keyboards while wiping their snot from their nose and press BLOCK. Now, that kind of reaction isn’t any better, but you know what’s different? We take their power away because we didn’t find them funny. To make their words have less meaning and base, hit them with your wit. Being angry or sensitive about it will only give them what they want. However, strike back with more humor and being funnier would only make them realize that yes, they have freedom of speech, but they’ll know that it’ll come with consequences. They can “joke” all they want because at the end of the day it’s social media, and it says a lot more about them more than it says about us. What we can do differently is how we react, and we can either give them more power that they don’t deserve, or we dismantle their power.

Remember, there are people who tell jokes to be funny and make people laugh, then we have people who tell “jokes” to hurt others because of what they have going on in their personal lives. It’s only up to us and how we react to certain jokes, and not every joke is funny. So, if we don’t find it funny, then it’s not funny. If it is funny, then have a chuckle and a giggle. Our reception can either be the jester’s reward or punishment.

Thank you for tuning in on Olive’s Corner at Olive’s Café! Enjoy your coffee artistically!

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