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LookItsBruce


Member

Posted Tue Oct 2nd, 2012 5:07am Post subject: Witless

Hello all. I am new here would like to ask you about wit: Where do you get it? Where does it come from? Can I buy some? You see, I was always a very quiet person. I didn't get out much and didn't socialize much at all. So I've never been very funny or very deep about anything. I have always been a good writer and given enough time I can come up with something insightful but even then it takes so long that I don't always have time to finish what I have started.

When I start going out more often I find myself to be the boring one. I can never say anything clever in conversations. When women joke with me I often find myself at a loss for words... Whenever I am teased I either have to laugh, resort to self-deprecation (which is fine unless you find yourself having to use it almost all the time) or I just make an awkward silence. It's not that I don't appreciate humor - I've just never been able to recreate it. And in the few cases I managed it took far too long to even matter.

What can I do to fix this? I don't really know what I should be thinking about to come up with these things and I have always been a "slow thinker." How can I get better at repartee? It is not fun being the guy who isn't fun.

I don't have a pen...

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joan


Member

Posted Tue Oct 2nd, 2012 7:52am Post subject: Witless

We are all different - the secret is to simply be yourself. Laugh at others' witty sayings, and no-one will notice you don't put in your own come-backs. Relax and let the witty ones entertain you.

Or - are you in a circle that you really like and feel you belong? Perhaps if you found some companions who share your likes and dislikes. it will help. For instance, I can sometimes make funny contributions in a political gathering, but if the conversation turns to sport I just blank out.

I'm not a fast thinker either, but I love a good conversation.

Oh, and on here we can be as slow as we like - in the e-world no-one can hear you hesitate!


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LookItsBruce


Member

Posted Wed Oct 3rd, 2012 11:14am Post subject: Witless

joan said:
We are all different - the secret is to simply be yourself. Laugh at others' witty sayings, and no-one will notice you don't put in your own come-backs. Relax and let the witty ones entertain you.

Or - are you in a circle that you really like and feel you belong? Perhaps if you found some companions who share your likes and dislikes. it will help. For instance, I can sometimes make funny contributions in a political gathering, but if the conversation turns to sport I just blank out.

I'm not a fast thinker either, but I love a good conversation.

Oh, and on here we can be as slow as we like - in the e-world no-one can hear you hesitate!

Thank you for your reply Joan. I tend to just talk to whomever is around. I don't really have a circle at the moment. The problem is that sooner or later someone punts to me and I just have nothing witty to say. It doesn't really matter much what we are talking about. I tend to have trouble coming up with witty things to say and it just bothers me.

I think it hit me when I was watching the old BBC show "Just A Minute" where the guests were supposed to be able to talk about some random subject for an entire minute. Ever since I saw that I wanted to be able to do it. It was interesting the way they could talk about anything in such a witty way whether they knew about it or not. And in between turns they always had something funny to say. I guess I want to be able to do that.

I don't have a pen...

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Nitro


Member

Posted Wed Oct 3rd, 2012 9:06pm Post subject: Witless

All the greatest comedians I've ever studied or listened to nearly across the board had very upsetting lives or experienced an internal pain that was deep and Comedy is a coping mechanism. There's those two faces of theater right, the laugh and cry masks..i forget what they're called. Two extremes of expression but they're both human faces. Some resolve things through dramatic adaptions, others with comedy and some with both. I guess that's just the human experience.

The thing is to take your pain ( your awkwardness ) and turn it into comedy. Self-deprecation is not a bad thing and people often read way too much into how serious it ought to be turned, analyzed, and done away with. Well, with that logic we'd not have had Stan Laurel and Jerry Lewis. In fact, Lewis once went to a psychiatrist to 'get rid of' the interior pain he wrestled with constantly. The doctor said he could help him do that, but he may lose the gift he developed ( over Time ) to cope with it. Lewis opted to bear the burden. I feel selfish feeling a little grateful he did, but on the other hand if he hadn't then entertainment might have lost him altogether. A TON of comedy is about laughing at our foibles, faults, weaknesses, ineptness, absurdity, hypocrisy, and even the darker aspects of our experiences. Comedy isn't just cathartic for the comedian, but for the audience as well or else it wouldn't be a draw.

Observation is a big part of comedy wether it's observing yourself or something external to you, and sharing it. Wether you're the prat fall person or the 'take my wife, please' type, the trick is to avoid being a total ass about it where you cause offense to the listeners. It's not enough to say,"I'm a silent dork." or "You're a chatty dork." because both can be, regardless of your intention, to be very off-putting. If it's humour you want to understand and want to achieve, I cannot recommend enough that you start first watching videos of your favorite comedians or comedies. Then start watching the masters in previous gens or those considered masters of the form, and also listen to interviews with them. There's wisdom there, well earned.

Pay attention to what 'works' and develop that till you can do it in your sleep. Expand from there. If you're a square and try to shove into a circle just because you think you 'should' be there, that's too much like going from getting your drivers liscence to instantly thinking you should be a Formula 1 driver. You'd never make that leap because for one, it doesn't work and for two, it's not achievable or advisable.

Finally, being the witty one in a social situation is not all it's cracked up to be. Turned on too frequently, people may come to expect you to be 'on' all the time OR they may assume you have the depth of a sheet of paper. Have you ever considered maybe you're the introspective one? There's nothing wrong with that either. You must follow your own nature or you'll make yourself miserable. What will you gain, really, in being witty? Approval? And is it REALLY approval? Sometimes people go way, way overboard trying to prove how witty they are all the time and they can be the most annoying prats you've ever met.

Really? Wow.

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