“It could have come to blows”, I thought to myself as I watched two people I know have quite an animated conversation about an issue they both feel passionately about.
Well, that’s an exagerration I guess, as they’re both extremely polite people, and they both had the chance to state their case, without really wanting to get into a fight.
After all, we were there to celebrate a mutual friend and colleague’s birthday.
The issue which nearly brought us all into tears, though was our respective sense of humours.
I’d offered the opinion that an allegedly Australian comic genius was actually quite loathesome, and completely unfunny.
It’s not a popular opinion to express amongst a group of people in society who think he’s Australia’s answer to John Cleese. You know who I’m talking about don’t you?
I, on the other hand expressed the view that Tracey Ulmann’s new series was genuine comic genius, a view that went down like a tonne of bricks.
I had an allie, though, so I didn’t feel so bad as my sense of humour was universally condemned.
Anyway, this week I’ve also discovered “Beautiful People”, a reasonably new comedy series from the BBC about an English “window dresser” living in New York.
The first episode which I think is still available through the ABC’s Iview is about him growing up gay in a fairly suburban environment. There were lots of laughs, but also lots of touching moments. Highly recommended.
And I guess that’s what sums up my sense of humour. I like humour with humanity. I’m not much one for humour for comedy sake. I’ve never been one for slapstick or witty word-plays, though I can appreciate both. No, I like humour with a sadness tinged to it, and characters which show genuine humanity.
I guess that’s why so many of those Sunday night UK sitcoms currently getting a run on Foxtel are favourites of mine. Absolutely Fabulous. Yes Prime Minister. The Vicar of Dibley. Even “On The Buses”. All of the characters are actually quite believable.
And that’s why I don’t find the particular comedian we were talking about to be funny. It’s “clever humour”, not genuine humour in my view.
And don’t get me started about the impact he had on Seachange! I could barely watch it.