How Are You?

The most common question of every social situation: “Hi, how are you?”

The typical response: “Fine thank you.” Or “Good thank you.” Even if you’re not ok, you’ll still reply with “Good” or “Fine” … right?

These two phrases are stuck into our brain as an automatic response. Someone asks, you should reply as if it were automatic without any hesitation. If you hesitate, then you’re weird. Trust me, you get weird looks as if you don’t know how to act as a normal human being.

Why is that? People want to be polite, but they don’t want to hear your problems. If you’re response is anything else aside from good or fine, all you’re left with is an awkward smile and a lame attempt of changing subjects. Of course- every now and then someone will listen if you say not ok, but if its not a family member or you’re closest friend they are most likely thinking what they’re going to do later when you’re spilling your heart out.

Slowly we are losing the ability to feel empathy. We are so involved in our own life that even though we want to sound polite by asking something so simple like “How are you?” we are unable to care for the real response. Even if we go with option two and just say “Hi” or “Hello” it doesn’t sound as polite as “Hi! How are you!?” right?

And then the response. Why is it that we feel that we have to reply with Good or Fine? Yes, sometimes it is the easier route than to say “Well, you know it’s not been a good day,” or “I’m mad,” or any other of the million emotions we all have. Just because we reply with how we are truly feeling it doesn’t mean that we are opening a door for a full blown conversation.  We are just sharing that we are not always ok. 

And with just sharing that “I’m not okay today” reply instead of lying with “Fine”- wouldn’t we feel much better?

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What Makes a Comedy Good?

Inspiration for this came because I’m having the hardest time attempting to write a comedy story. This genre is turning out to be difficult. Also, the other night I watched Movie 43 and was wicked upset I spent the money renting it. (Did someone actually like this movie?) These things made me question what makes a comedy good? And how is it that there are some things that make some people laugh and others not?

Some people think that it’s because they are more mature or they are at a intellectual level that some things aren’t funny anymore. I’ve met people who don’t even want to watch a clip of something silly. “It’s going to ruin my brain…” or “God, how can you laugh at that?”

It honestly puzzles me because then what does that say about me? I’m the type of person who will watch the Colbert Report and laugh or some political/social comedy and laugh at that too, but I’m also the type of person that will laugh at Jackass or any silly comedy. I don’t mind if a movie is crass or if it crosses any of those socially accepted lines.  As long as it still has some good qualities into it too. So, I’m stupid and mature or smart and immature- right?

Comedy also puzzles me because there are some instances where they cross every single line that it creates a new level of crass humor that you feel like you don’t know what you just watched. This would be me after watching Movie 43 (Oh Hugh Jackman…if you haven’t seen the movie, look up a picture of him in this movie).  I knew it was a stupid movie to begin with, but there was so much potential for a silly mindless entertaining movie and they ruined it.

Alright- humor. It is hard to write something that may make everyone laugh. Does that mean that we have to criticize what makes some people laugh and others don’t?  How can you find the midway between writing or producing something that is funny and also something that is still good?