In the always apt thoughts of Terpsichore, comedy is tragedy + time, but sometimes tragedy can be comedy + time. This is a sobering thought, but for now, shall I give you a moment’s laugh?
I work with a varied lot. Some are silly, some are driven, some are very much not. Some are snide, and some are gregarious. And some are smarter than others.
The other day, I was standing about and one young man said to another “There haven’t been any pineapples today.”
I turned about and about in my mind what this could portend. Easiest to ask, even though it was someone else’s conversation. The best I could figure was that pineapples were some kind of gauge or test of something.
I said “Are pineapples some kind of litmus?”
And Dim Jimmy said “No, Thalia, they are a fruit.”
With scorn. He said it with scorn. Derision, had he known the term, played around the edges of his smile.
It’s a punch line, I know. No, it’s a fruit. That’s the comedy.
In a few years, there could be a problem.
“I don’t know if you want to trust Jimmy’s definitions.”
“Jimmy? He’s the smartest guy I know! Jimmy is in law school.”
I did laugh. I laughed and laughed. I actually don’t believe it yet. I’m still laughing. (now add time… see what I mean? All this is about to get Sophoclean on this generation of dim jimmies.)