The Thin Line Between Funny and Mean

“There is a thin line that separates laughter and pain, comedy and tragedy, humor and hurt.”
―Erma Bombeck

This morning I was playing on my favorite Monday morning activity, #MondayBlogs, created by online book marketing guru, author, and poet Rachel Thompson @RachelintheOC, and I came across an interesting tweet.

Typically, #MondayBlogs is a huge tweet-fest of blogging tips like how to beat writer’s block, making your blog appeal to a larger group, and many original blogs of wonderful storytelling by some amazing writers.

This tweet was different.

It didn’t fit in with the camaraderie and support of the many #MondayBloggers. The purpose of the tweet was to throw some major shade at Melania Trump and her son Baron.

Now mind you, I am no Trump supporter. I believe he is a narcissistic national embarrassment. But his wife and young son? Sorry, to me they are off limits. Half of my Twitter feed is full of Trump gaffes and statistics showing his ignorance. But I would never. Ever. Take on Melania and Baron. I figure they are already living in their own special brand of hell.

We let Michelle Obama stay out of the limelight for a year before she found her causes as First Lady and Sasha and Malia were given complete privacy at ages not so different than Baron’s. I’m sorry, I do not find Melania and Baron as fodder for tacky off-color jokes not one bit funny.

Her husband and his father are giving us great material. Isn’t that enough?

I rarely take on anyone who tweets; generally, I just think to myself…whatever…and move on. But this tweet was just so nasty I felt compelled to say something. I couldn’t stop myself. If you see something, say something, right? So I left a polite comment saying perhaps the First Lady and her son should be left out of burning jokes.

Here’s the weird part. The author of the tweet “hearted” my tweet and I thought, well isn’t that nice. But wait.

A minute later I got a lecture saying exactly this:

Standards for Comedy
To be funny/humorous Comedians have to be:

I did not respond, always believing that indifference is my secret weapon, although it was VERY tempting to point out that she misspelled condescending and the word comedians was not capitalized. I guess spelling and capitalization are not a requirement for comedians.

I think I’m funny as hell, but I am none of those things listed above. And neither are many comedians. I can only hope she/he takes this special brand of comedy somewhere else far, far away from our wonderful #MondayBlogs.

Because there IS a line between funny and mean.

Photo Credit: DetroitDerek Photography ( ALL RIGHTS RESERVED ) Flickr via Compfight cc

Dori Owen

Dori Owen blogs on, is a columnist on, a contributor/editor for The Lithium Chronicles, created the Facebook page Diary of an Arizona Girl, is an author on AskABipolar, was featured in the books FeminineCollective RAW&UNFILTERED VOL I and StigmaFighters Vol II, and is a zealous tweeter as @doriowen. She's a former LA wild child who settled into grownup life as a project manager, collecting an MBA and a few husbands along the way. Dori spent her adult years in Southern California, with a brief stay in Reno, and has now returned to where she ran away from in Arizona. She is a shown artist, writer, and her favorite pastime is upcycling old furniture she finds from thrift stores. She lives with her beloved rescued terrier, Olivia Twist, and the cat who came to visit but stayed. The love of her life is her grown son in Portland, Oregon who very much resents being introduced after her pets. But she she does love him the most.


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