I don’t know much, but I know your kid isn’t funny.
How do I know? Because no kids are funny.
This includes mine.
Don’t get me wrong; I laugh at my kid all the time. Pretty much nonstop. But that’s not because he’s funny. It’s because he’s so unrelentingly stupid.
He does funny things, he says funny things, he makes Mom and Buried and me laugh constantly. But that’s not the same thing as being funny; that’s him just being a cute, stupid little dunderhead who doesn’t realize you don’t wear buckets as hats and that the Cookie Monster’s name isn’t Gecko-gecko, and so on…
Like all toddlers, he’s a goof who doesn’t know his ass from his elbow. Such ignorance occasionally results in some funny moments, like that time he got caught reading My Pet Goat upside down. But that doesn’t make him funny.
Think about your favorite comedians. Are they your favorites because they screw up a lot and their mistakes are hilarious? No; it’s because, after some time spent trying really hard, they eventually make you laugh.On purpose. Funny requires intent; and when someone does something funny by accident, you don’t laugh with them, you laugh at them. And the word you use to describe someone you laugh at is not “funny.”
Kids do all sorts of amusing things, but they aren’t going for laughs. Mostly they’re feeling their way through everyday life by trial and error. At best, they’re going for attention. Either way, the laughs are incidental. They like it when you laugh, obviously, and they may repeat whatever idiotic thing they just did that provoked your laughter, but they aren’t deploying clever wordplay or using jokes to clue us in to deeper truths about the human condition. They are just smearing peanut butter on their face because it made Mommy chuckle.
“Funny” is the most subjective thing in the world; it’s impossible to know what someone else will find hilarious or “Big Bang Theory” (that’s my term for the opposite of funny). And since no parent can be objective about their own kids, an assertion by a mom or dad that their kid is funny could not be more meaningless. The level of subjectivity there is practically infinite. As is the lack of interest another person has in someone else’s child, no matter how “funny” or “smart” his parents say he is.
That’s not to say kids can’t be entertaining, they definitely can. I love watching my son figure things out and make mistakes and fall on his face and accidentally pour applesauce on his lap. It’s a freaking blast. But I don’t go around telling other people how funny my son is because I’m not an idiot, and I actually remember what it was like when I didn’t have a kid.
Before I became a parent, I couldn’t have cared less about the adorable, goofy antics someone else’s kid was getting up to. All I wanted to know was why this person was blocking my way to the bar to talk about the bundle of joy that essentially ended their youth.
So go ahead, enjoy your kids. Have a good time with them, laugh it up. God knows you need a chuckle or two to balance out all the whining.
Just remember: no one wants to hear about how funny your kid is because, quite simply, it’s bullshit.
If Bill Cosby couldn’t interest me in the “funny” things that kids do, you certainly won’t.