Welcome to Week 3! As I am certain you are being constantly reminded, the term is hurtling towards Mid Year Exams. I hope you’re all tying up your braids/high ponies, rolling up your sleeves, getting out the dustpans and grass brooms of focus and determination and crouching down to sweep up the pearls of wisdom that drop from the air around our classroom discussions and onto the pages of your notebooks.
Did you find that funny? Probably not. Did you have to go read it again to see if there was anything that warranted a snort of weak amusement? No?
I think perhaps, as we discussed in our afternoon class today, it’s quite difficult to say why something is funny or not. It’s possibly even more difficult to be funny in our own writing. Sense of humour, as we all know, is somewhat subjective. Ceejay, we discovered today in class, is probably the most discerning humourist of the group, since she found none of my examples worth even a wry smile and an eyeroll.
Did you laugh then?
Would the image of Machache extravagantly miming the difference between Thick (Stupid) and Thick (Amber Rose) do the trick?
Is it funnier when it’s something we can relate to?
Tying in with our discussion of serialised newspaper columns, we read some of the very short articles by Guy Browning in The Guardian. For those of you who missed out, I would like you to follow these links and check him out. He is the author of a series of short “How to…” articles, giving helpful explanations about things that probably don’t need to be explained.
How to be Clumsy: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2006/feb/18/weekend.guybrowning
How to Have a Takeaway:
How to do Chores:
and, my personal favourite: How to Lick: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2007/dec/08/weekend.guybrowning
I defy you to not find the licking one funny.
We’re going to talk a bit more in class about humour in writing, and maybe think about how writers (Like Bill Bryson, and the very panicky lady from our latest Past Paper, for example) cultivate a jocular or comedic tone.
In the comments below, can you think of titles for any other potentially funny “How to” articles? For example:
“How to pass your Drivers Test in Bulawayo”
“How to be in Lower Sixth”
“How to become a prefect at GC”
“How to Slide into the DMs”
You will have to write this “How To”as a writing assignment, so let’s see if we can help each other brainstorm some fun ideas. Again, if you’re posting on the blog this week, you can post your How To.
See you tomorrow!