Today is the day to make a nice pile of used kleenex.
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In case you don't remember, last month in Vanity Fair Christopher Hitchens wrote an article that claimed that women are simply not as funny as men. Today, Zulkey.com interviewee Mary Birdsong (who you can catch in "Reno 911" and the forthcoming film "Reno 911: Miami) shares a response to the piece:
IN DEFENSE OF THE FUNNY MAN WHO WROTE THE BIG ARTICLE
By Mary Birdsong
I've gotten so sick of my lady friends complaining all week about that funny man who wrote the big article in Vanity Fair ("Why Women Are Not Funny") that I have to come to his aid. This guy knows comedy. I can't remember the last time I read such a hilarious critique. And so chock-full of the gut-busting comedy of Kipling! Nice. Kipling slays me. Always has. I hope other 'zines start printing articles like that in their pages. Articles like "Why Latinos Are Lazy," "Why Jews Are Cheap" and "Why Colored Folk Should Be Kept Out Of Pro Ball."
Wait one second. I'll be right back.
Sorry about that. Somebody emailed me a photo of their baby and I had to stare at it for a couple of hours. I'm totally here now. What was I saying? Oh, right. I remember…
I want to say thank you to the really funny man who wrote the big article. (I can't remember his name, but I do remember the name of my friend's really cute baby-- it's Nate.) I want to thank him for taking the weight of the laugh-starved world off my shoulders. I used to feel so guilty that I wasn't funny. Ashamed, even. But after reading that really funny man's article I now see that IT'S NOT MY FAULT! I'm just a woman. A woman who can't think of anything but babies. And sometimes religion.
Hold on one sec.
I got distracted again. I was looking at my cup of coffee and I swore I saw the face of Jesus in it. (Don’t be jealous, guys, but this shit happens to me ALL THE TIME, because like the funny man very wisely pointed out, my sex is the "rank-and-file mainstay of religion.") But this particular religious vision was a false alarm. I think the milk was just bad and it sort of curdled into what looked like my savior.
What was I saying? Was it something about babies? I love babies. Almost as much as Jesus. Oh, right! I remember.
The funny man wrote that you never hear a guy brag about his girlfriend, "…and man, does she ever make 'em laugh." And that's so true! My boyfriend is unusual 'cuz he doesn't mind if I make him laugh-- in private. But when we first dated I made the mistake of making him laugh really hard at a party in front of people and he bitch-slapped me in the car on the way home. He was totally right. Now if we're in public and I think of something funny I just write it on a post-it and tell him quietly after I say my prayers at night.
The one thing I found disappointing about that funny man's article is that the only women he interviewed were Nora Ephron and Fran Leibowitz. Everyone knows they're definitely not funny. So how can he interview them but not include women who've at least come close to being funny- I'm talking of course about sitcom legends Brooke Shields and Lea Thompson. Hello???!!? (The word "hello" should be read like a gay guy would say it. I think that's HILARIOUS when people do that.) I'm glad he didn't interview women like Sarah Silverman or Tina Fey or Amy Sedaris.
And I love that the funny man also had the balls to admit that women "have the world at their mercy." I'm so sick of hearing my gal pals whine about how women only earn 75 cents to every dollar a man does, and that women are 50% of the population but own only 1% of the real estate. So what??! We can STILL get laid whenever we want. And that's power, my friend.
Oh, and the data he referenced from that study at Stanford (in which 10 men and 10 women were shown 70 black and white cartoons to rate them on a funniness scale) totally supports his theory. It proves men are TOTALLY better at laughing at black and white cartoons than women are. That's pretty much the same thing as doing standup or writing comedy. I bet Kipling was awesome at laughing at black and white cartoons. I've been trying to find a decent comedy club where men stand on stage and show each other black and white cartoons. I'd pay like… fifty bucks for that.
And I have to find out when the funny man himself is going to do standup comedy next. He said he is an "occasional standup performer." On what occasions does he do standup? I bet he kills on Guy Fawkes Night or some other neato England-type occasion. All I know is if I do get to see him do stand-up, I hope he does a "Depend" joke. You see, unlike most women, who's "appetite for talk about that fine product known as 'Depend' is limited," I love a good adult diaper joke. I get so frustrated with the lack of good "Depend" jokes these days. I wish Lenny Bruce had lived long enough to write a really good "Depend" joke.
And when he wrote "The placenta is made up of brain cells that migrate southward during pregnancy and take the sense of humor along with them." I suddenly I had this huge epiphany. Actually, "epiphany" isn't the word I would've used, but only because I didn't know that big word. I didn't know how to describe what I felt, so I asked my boyfriend for a big word to match the facial expressions I showed him. Have you ever seen the movie "Nell?" It was kind of like that. And my boyfriend finally told me (after I agreed to suck his super-massive black cock) that the word I was looking for was "epiphany." And he was right! (He's super smart.) My epiphany was that a "vag" is just a funny-sucking black hole.1 I looked up the word "vag" in the dictionary, just to be sure. And you know what? It wasn't in there. "Vag" was nowhere to be found. But it did give a definition for "vagina," which was:
Va-gi-na n. an unfunny orifice that bleeds "boring juice. "
In conclusion… oh, sorry. Hold on!
I couldn't resist. Just now I had to forward a mass-email to a bunch of my best gal pals. It was this awesomely sweet poem about kittens. And friendship. And how to avoid getting raped in supermarket parking lots.2
1 My boyfriend watches the Science Channel a lot, and I don't know what black holes are, but I do know that men are really really scared of black holes and super massive black holes. Scientists keep calling them "evil" and "terrible," which is interesting because I had a really boring dream last night where I kept calling a black hole "God's vagina."
2 Seriously, one of the great tips in this email on how to not get raped in a parking lot is to never wear your hair in a ponytail. Putting your hair in a ponytail is basically like wearing a rape-handle. (Aren't footnotes super neato? I want to open a children's shoe store someday and call it "Footnotes." Wouldn't that be so cute?)
Oh my god this is so weird but my vagina is talking. What's that you're trying to say, oh "eery" canal? It's saying:
"Tell the funny man who wrote the big article that it is too uncomfortable for most men to laugh at women's jokes. The act of laughing at someone's joke is an act of recognition. An act of empathy, of compassion. It is putting oneself in the joke-teller's shoes. Women rarely have a problem projecting themselves into the joke a man might tell. Women are accustomed to empathizing. They're quite used to reading the word "HE" and translating it to "SHE" in their pretty heads. They are equally as comfortable wearing workboots as they are high heels. But for a man to put himself in someone else's shoes? When those shoes are 3 inch strappy heels with pink rhinestones on the toes, a man has a hard time laughing because he's too busy worrying that he might be gay. Unless he is Eddie Izzard, or one of the many awesome, self-aware men in the world, who are quickly growing in number. So... maybe the question we should ask is not 'Why are women not funny?' but instead... 'Why are men bad laughers?'"3
Wow, vagina. You sure are chatty. I didn't realize my orifice had so much to say. Or that it had a British accent. (I wonder if my vagina is a lesbian? I bet she is. Dyke!)
My boyfriend told me that the really funny man has said a bunch of times how he's super excited about the war in Iraq, so I think he'll like this Kipling gem: "When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains, and the women come out to cut up what remains, jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains and go to your gawd like a soldier."
Women-- the original cut-ups.
3 The author of this piece accepts no responsibility for the opinions put forth by the orifice. And besides... they were shamelessly plagiarized from a comic named Sheila Head.