How to be funnier
So, you’ve come up with an idea for a funny line ….. but can you make it funnier? Quite possibly you can.
The way that you structure your humour is very important. Turn your mind to the phrase ‘punch line’. The important word is ‘punch‘. It means impact and, more importantly, finality. Let me explain by example. I have a daft joke in my stand up comedy routine which goes as follows:
“My mother was really upset one year when my father bought her a mixer for Christmas…..
… but by the end of January she’d concreted the patio”.
It does get a laugh – I promise!!
Why? It’s the element of surprise. You assume I am talking about a food mixer. The phrase ‘concreted the patio’ is the phrase that twists that assumption – causing the surprise. And the biggest surprise is the word ‘patio’.
As we know, surprise leads to laugher – so why carry on talking after the key word (in this case it’s obviously ‘patio’). If the punchline had been “She’d concreted the patio by the end of January” I would have been using words I didn’t need. I would have been ‘squashing the laughter.’
During my workshops I find that most people have great ideas for lines and observations they can use. They just need a little ‘tweaking’ and it’s often in the word placement. Take the time to listen to a few comedians and you’ll see what I mean.