On Humor

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries is not ‘Eureka!’ (I found it!) but ‘That’s funny…’ — Isaac Asimov

The best humor goes beyond amusement. It can help people see the world from a new point of view and help people change the way they think. The humorist is a gadfly in the best sense of the word, one who annoys the powerful but provokes positive action. Even when kings wielded absolute power, they had the licensed fool or court jester to provide them with the truth in a humorous way. Considering how important humor is, it’s interesting that Donald Trump does not laugh. Below I have some humorous things that make you think and some things that are just funny.

Covid-19 Humor

Things added in 2022

  • Each year comedy enters the national/international stage in a different way. In 2022, it’s all about comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, the unlikely President of Ukraine, who’s previous job was as a television star who played a schoolteacher who became the unlikely President of Ukraine. I’m starting to watch his show Servant of the People (subtitled in English, here’s a clip dubbed in English). In this profile in the New Yorker Zelensky says, ” ‘I started out making fun of politicians, parodying them, and, in doing so, showing what kind of Ukraine I would like to see.” Zelensky gives me the hope that politics doesn’t have to be about bad acting. He says, “Politics is like bad cinema—people overact, take it too far. When I speak with politicians, I see this in their facial expressions, their eyes, the way they squint… I look at things like a producer. I would often watch a scene on the monitor, and the director and I would yell, ‘Stop, no more, this is unwatchable! No one will believe this.” Instead, he says, “What the viewer loves in an actor, this feeling of humanity—of course I use it,” he said. “And that’s very easy to do, because I remain myself.” This guy actually plays the role of a hero president, inspiring his people and not running out of his country to hide. This is our hero comedian. Plus, he’s Jewish. For a more serious take on Zelensky, check out: An Unlikely Hero (Nytimes), Volodymyr Zelenskyy, explained in 8 moments (especially his speech to the European Parliment where the translater is holding back tears).

Things added in 2021

Things added in 2020

Things added in 2019

From 2018

From 2017

From 2016

Funny Tech Videos

Funny Work Videos