And now for something completely relevant.
Alright, I’ll be honest and come clean: I did not enjoy the ending of Diary of a Wimpy Kid. While I was able to laugh and find a great deal of humor throughout the entire novel, a feeling in the back of my head was growing and growing: I was too much like this kid in middle school. Instead of using this space to rant about just how similar we were (I never had to eat cheese of the blacktop, after all), I will instead use this as a springboard for what I found to be most surprising about what I learned in my studies of humor.
No matter how people laugh and find funny the same things, the finer points of an individual’s sense of humor are so unique that it is extremely difficult to find two individuals who will laugh at the exact same things and fail to find humor in everything else (like the Three Stooges). From discussions about laughing at funerals to the applicability of the Superiority model of humor to friends and the belief that if something is funny it can’t be harmful, everyone seems to have their own little quirk about what tickles their funny bone.
I find this observation hilarious. Personally, I think (with very few important exceptions) that having a sense of humor at all is critically important to a good life, long or otherwise. Being able to laugh at the world and yourself goes a long way towards creating a better life for yourself and those around you. Leading this point forward, it makes sense that a sense of humor can define you as a person. If everyone’s sense of humor really is unique, then despite all the similarities everyone can bring a new and different perspective to how something is humorous. In that sense, I question the existence of a “Unified Field Theory of Humor.” Just as no human being is exactly the same, as long as everyone has their own outlook on humor the definition of what is funny will always be evolving, aiming for completeness but never really getting there.
In the immortal words of Fred Astaire:
“Make ‘em laugh!”