Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator (ludickid) wrote,
Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator
ludickid

I apologize deeply for this entry

On occasion, you will hear me -- or sometimes calamityjon -- talk about the "ten percenter joke". What this refers to is a joke whose referent or subject is so obscure, whose humor is so contingent on an arcane cultural or social or linguistic idea, that only ten percent of its readers have a chance of understanding it, let alone enjoying it. I have amended such references to my own humor to "one percenter jokes", revolving as they do around gags, if you can call them that, so abstract that the audience for them consists of me, Jon, Tony Isabella and, I dunno, Richard Rorty.

Recently, like yesterday, I had a humor pitch to a major web humor reservoir rejected. I thought it was pretty funny, but the editor of this site -- a man I've worked with before, who has offered high praise for my little laff-makers, rejected it as "too obscure". That is fair enough. So fair, in fact, that it got me to wondering: I think I'm kinda funny, but people who think they're funny are usually 100% wrong. And I am certainly amenable to the charge that any humor value the things I write might initially possess are smothered in their crib by the three hundred metric tons of obscurity I shovel upon them as soon as they come home from the Comedy Hospital. I make Ian Frazier look like Shecky Greene, which in itself is a ridiculously obscure reference and further evidence as if any were needed that I am a sick man who can't control himself.

Now, here's the thing. I don't actually enjoy being so obscure that no one likes my jokes. I'm not saying I want to drop the content of my humor writing to King of Queens levels, but completely alienating my audience isn't actually a goal of mine. Sure, it's gratifying when I get one people HAW HAWing at my literary theory goofs and six hundred staring blankly, but I actually do make a small amount of money writing humor, and I would like to think that my audience could theoretically be larger than one percent of the people on my LiveJournal.

Hence this deeply embarrassing administrative poll. The other day, I posted a poll containing a joke question concerning the film Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus. Now, I thought the jokes in this question were funny, but now they seem like a perfect example of my asininely overcomplicated sense of humor. So I'd like to ask you, the shame-filled and inexplicable Skullbucket reader, a few questions. Please answer honestly, or at least provide funny write-in votes. This is not about you being dumb; this is about me being dumb.

Thank you and good night.

Poll #863202 The One Percenter Poll

Do you know that there is actually a film called "Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus"?

Yes
30(41.1%)
No
42(57.5%)
Maybe
1(1.4%)
None of your goddamn business
0(0.0%)
Other
0(0.0%)

Do you know who Joseph Beuys is?

Yes
19(26.0%)
No
50(68.5%)
Maybe
4(5.5%)
None of your goddamn business
0(0.0%)
Other
0(0.0%)

Do you know who Reed Waller is?

Yes
10(13.7%)
No
58(79.5%)
Maybe
5(6.8%)
None of your goddamn business
0(0.0%)
Other
0(0.0%)

Do you know who Dorothy Wiggin is?

Yes
8(11.0%)
No
61(83.6%)
Maybe
4(5.5%)
None of your goddamn business
0(0.0%)
Other
0(0.0%)

Did you vote for the "Furley: An Imaginary Portrait of Don Knotts" option because you thought it was the funniest answer, or because Don Knotts was the only person on the list you recognized?

The former
11(15.1%)
The latter
6(8.2%)
I didn't vote for that option
50(68.5%)
None of your goddamn business
2(2.7%)
Other
4(5.5%)

Do you, as a rule, find my jokes to be too obscure?

Yes
2(2.8%)
No
36(50.0%)
Maybe
30(41.7%)
None of your goddamn business
0(0.0%)
Other
4(5.6%)

Am I funny?

No
0(0.0%)
You're funnier than some of the people on my Friends list who think they're funny
60(82.2%)
Funny-LOOKIN'
9(12.3%)
The fact that you would pose this question answers it. Also you suck.
1(1.4%)
You know who's funny? __________ is funny.
3(4.1%)

Where is the "Arrested Development" season 3 DVD I ordered two weeks ago?

It is in the mail
12(16.4%)
It has been lost
8(11.0%)
They never sent it in the first place
18(24.7%)
I don't know
21(28.8%)
Remember when John Green said your jokes are "too postmodern"? You really should have taken that to heart.
14(19.2%)
Tags: crankery, polls, trivium
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