I recently received some feedback that I should write more ‘funny’ posts. So here’s a post about jokes. It’s not funny. Sorry.
What’s grinding my gears today? People that do or say offensive things and then tell other people that it was “just a joke”. Lighten up. Get a sense of humour.
I consider myself to have a pretty decent sense of humour, I think everyone says that though. (Sidebar: I heard a cracking joke last night about canoes and American beer!*)
The rule should be: it’s only a joke if everyone is laughing or rolling their eyes (lame jokes are jokes too). If anyone is offended, it’s not a joke and it’s certainly not a funny one.
Wicked Campers is in the news today for being stupidly offensive and then being stupidly defiant about their right to be stupid and offensive. I won’t republish what’s painted on the van in question, it’s repulsive. It’s the kind of rubbish that you’d expect to be in a Robin Thicke song or a slowly dying men’s magazine. The rubbish in those two things is fine because you can choose not to listen to them or buy them quite easily. The problem with the Wicked Camper situation is that they are in your face whether you like it or not. You can’t swerve off the road or shut your eyes while driving when one comes in your direction, as much as you may want to. In my books, anything that prompts an 11-year-old girl to ask if she’s a slut is not something that should be visible in public. There’s a petition and a number of articles doing the rounds. The main defence is that it’s “just a joke”. *Sigh*.
I can kind of see it from the Wicked Campers point of view. I get it’s a tough market. When you have a shitty product that similar to a whole lot of other much better products, you have to differentiate yourself in some way. Some of the vans are beautifully decorated and some are actually funny. Not all of them though. Instead of just using art and colour to differentiate themselves (which probably would have been enough in itself), they resort to racist, homophobic, sexist, headline-grabbing, slogans. Their boss told the Wall Street Journal that all publicity is good publicity. It reeks of desperation and sad old people trying to appeal to a youth market they don’t understand.
LOOK HOW EDGY/FUNNY WE ARE, WE ARE NOT A BORING RENT-A-CAR COMPANY. LOOK: COUNTER CULTURE.
Do and say whatever the hell you want behind closed doors, inside the covers of a sticky magazine no one buys, or in a song on an album that also is bought by no one. Just don’t shove it in my face.
Or as the internet would say: religion/politics/offensive slogans are like a penis – it’s fine to have one and be proud of it, but when you take it out and wave it in my face, we’re going to have a problem.
*What’s the difference between two people doing it in a canoe and American beer? They’re both fucking close to water. 🙂