I thought about this question for the good part of a day as it left me self-analyzing, do I or don’t I?
To the best of my knowledge, I do not. To do so would be inconsistent with my current base personality.
Close to twenty years ago I used to like telling jokes. I would always have one at the ready that I could deliver to suit the occasion. I told a couple jokes that weren’t appreciated and at the best were insensitive. When I heard the other person’s reasoning, I agreed. I haven’t told a joke since then. That doesn’t mean that humour isn’t a part of my everyday life, it is, but without jokes that are hurtful.
Within my weekly Toastmasters meeting we would tell our members to deliver a joke that wasn’t sexist, racist, dirty or discriminatory in any way. Despite our precautions, inappropriate so-called jokes, would slip through. I stopped delivering jokes years ago because I think far too many of them are hurtful.
An older neighbour of mine once said “Can you take a joke?” That seems to be a preamble to someone telling me something I don’t want to hear and it is usually offensive. This time it was. I believe that I ‘fake’ laughed at the time. In other circumstances I would have told the person that I found their humour to be offensive and not to tell me anymore. In this case, I had no relationship other than living near him, so fake laughing, with the hope that there wasn’t more coming, was my best option.
I believe that jokes may be falling out of favour, other than with stand-up comics. As I was writing this answer, my four-year old granddaughter got up to start her morning. She was carrying her pet stuffed monkey. I asked her do you know any good jokes. She replied “Yes, I do!” This surprized me somewhat. She then said ‘What do call a turkey on a trampoline?” Of course my reply was “I don’t know. What do you call a turkey on a trampoline?” Her reply was “a turkey tramp?”
Did I fake laugh? You bet! And you can be assured that I will be sharing the joke with my fellow grandparents at work.
Thanks for the question!
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Rae A. Stonehouse is an author, speaker, and self-publishing consultant dedicated to helping others embrace constant improvement and overcome challenges. With over 40 years of experience as a Registered Nurse in psychiatry and mental health, Rae brings a wealth of knowledge and passion for self-development to his writing and presentations.
As a 25+ year member of Toastmasters International, Rae has systematically built his communication abilities and self-confidence to share his insights as an author and speaker. His self-help books and personal development presentations aim to have conversational one-on-one connections with readers and audiences.
Rae is known for his wry sense of humor and sage advice delivered in a relatable coaching style. After four decades as a nurse, Rae has rewired rather than retired, actively writing and pursuing public speaking. He strives to share lessons learned to help others achieve personal and professional growth.