Hey! That’s Not Funny!


Hey! That’s Not Funny!

(what to say when you’re not laughing at your friends)

We’ve all been in situations where a friend or coworker tells us a joke or shows us something that’s supposed to be funny… but it’s not. It can be even worse if they had a hand in creating the unfunny thingy. The true horror comes when they ask us directly “So… WhaddaYaThink?

Well, fret not friends and neighbors! I’m here to help you out of these awkward situations with this handy guide… let’s start, shall we?

The most important point to remember in these cases is that nobody is a mind-reader (pretty sure on that one). So the real trick lies not so much in what you say, but what you’re thinking when you say it.  Here’s a chart with some of my top responses:

What I Say What I Mean
(when it’s funny)
What I Mean
(when it’s not)
“Interesting” I’ve really enjoyed your intellectually witty repartee. Interesting that you’re actually proud you’ve said that in public.
“Funny” Funny! Funny, I can’t think why I’m still standing here.
“Good” Droll, punny, or dry humour, but well done, sir! Good – you’ve stopped.
“Wow” Wow! That was unexpected, but hillarious! Wow… nobody’s ever told you you’re not funny, huh?
“That was something” … something wonderful! You’ve wounded my ears and my sense of humor – good job!
“Not Funny” That’s so good I need to stop this person before they become serious competition… That’s so bad I need to stop this person before they speak again…
(uncontrollable laughing) (laughing with you) (laughing at you)


But why stop there? Funny stuff is just the tip of the iceberg.  Saying vs. thinking can be used in a veritable plethora of problematic queries, such as “Does this dress make me look fat?”, “What did you mean by that?”, and “Will you marry me?”… although the consequences will be more dire in some of these than others.

Of course, now that I’ve told you this, the downside is that you’ll never quite be sure what I mean when I’m speaking… and I won’t know what you mean either.

Now that’s funny!



9 thoughts on “Hey! That’s Not Funny!

  1. I’m really impressed you made a chart here. I need to print it out and put it next to the computer so I know what you MIGHT mean the next time you respond to one of my “funny” e-mails … 🙂

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