|photo by H. Hoffman|
THE PATH TO RETIREMENT STARTS HERE
I laughed out loud.
Right behind the billboard was Hillside Cemetery. Could the billboard have been placed in a worse location?
But the juxtaposition was hilarious to me.
As I drove on I wondered how many thousands of people saw that billboard each day and of those, how many recognized the absurdity of the scene? My guess is very few.
But I bet if you had fifty comedy writers all drive by that billboard at least half would spot the humor. It’s not that comedy writers are more perceptive or have better powers of observation – it’s just that we’re wired to spot comic situations.
Can this skill be learned? To a degree I suspect it can. You just have to keep your radar up. I’ve received some nice compliments about my travelogues (ebook still only $2.99… order one for godsakes!) from people who say I spot the funniest things. Well you can, too. I get lost on the same streets and take the same tours that you do. It’s primarily a matter of being on the lookout for comedy. And trust me, it’s there. Everywhere. As an exercise, for your next trip, prepare your own travelogue. Whether you actually write it or not, I’m guessing you’ll see things you never saw before – things that were right under your nose all along. Try it.
Another exercise I recommend is listening carefully to bits of conversations as people pass by. Park yourself at a table in a mall food court and just make note of what you hear around you. You’ll be amazed at the snippets of delicious dialogue you pick up.
And here’s the best part – it’s all FREE ENTERTAINMENT. Goofy headlines, embarrassing auto-corrected text messages, ridiculous wardrobes, surreal niblets of conversations – yours for the laughing. Sometimes you can get ideas and stories and jokes from what you observe, but even if you don’t – what a gift it is to be able to go through life and find amusement in the world!
THE PATH TO COMIC APPRECIATION BEGINS HERE.