What’s Funny? I don’t get the joke?
The humor from one country to another is so different and it is not always down to the language. The Australian sense of humor is very much linked to the British style where it is quick and sometimes barbed. The Australian humor can be course but funny and it may sound argumentative and insulting to those without the humor.
For example, the American humor is totally different. You only have to watch the TV shows and the constant canned laughter that you begin to see it is very much manufactured and even slapstick. In my opinion, the Filipino shares the American humor with slapstick being very much loved.
Amazingly, Mr Bean is huge all over Asia and not so much in the UK now thirty years after the show was axed. There has been many times when I have been in a bar with Aussie friends when we get to insult each other and rib each other and on several occasions the Filipinos will walk off thinking there is going to be a fight and U.S. friends try to calm down a situation when there really is not a situation.
The problem is that Australians like the British use sarcasm in a lot of jokes and irony, and that is just not understood by the Filipinos or Americans and can come across as rude or insulting. A great off the cuff sarcastic joke in the Philippines will often be taken as an insult or just too seriously and causes huge problems.
If you watch Filipino TV it is all emotion and screaming. Comedians are loud and very physical and TV shows always seem to go for the lowest common denominator and aim to the lowest humour point. There is not much “clever” comedy in the country and if there was it would probably not be understood by most of the audience.
Whichever country you grew up in you assume that is the norm. So, when I questioned the humour of the Philippines with my Pinoy friends they quite rightly told me I was the one out of step with humour not them. They were and are right. So, I love the times I can sit in an expat bar and have a night of gentle insults back and forth with people who are enjoying the same.
And just in case some of my American friends think the spell check is not working there is a U in humour-honest.
A gang decided to rob a bank…they opened every vault and found only cups of yogurt. So they ate it all…
Next day, in CNN news:
“BIGGEST SPERM BANK ROBBED!”