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Chesterton, Shaw, and the Effect of Laughter on Insult

Chesterton and Shaw

The Internet hath done wondrous deeds, but raising the intellectual bar cannot counted among them. This became clear when I realized the question man alone has the dignity to ask—Am I a creature or an accident?—is being answered by taking screenshots of our oppositions’ Facebook statuses, rebutting them in Impact font, and posting them in a forum appropriated for the caress of our preconceived notions and the heavy petting of our unexamined faith. In this climate of awful, between the “God Hates Gays” meme and the “Atheism Causes War” rebuttal, I sympathize with the man who dismisses current atheistic/theistic dialogue as a joke.

But the problem with all this is that it’s not a joke. If there were jokes, there would be understanding, and an untwisting of sneers besides. The power of humor is not that it makes the serious frivolous, but that it unites opposites, and binds contraries in communion. By opening the lungs to laugh, humor opens the heart to hear, rendering a man absurdly vulnerable to anything his opposition wishes to say.

Take, for instance, the fact that it is acceptable to insult a man’s mother to his face if—and only if—you can make him laugh while doing it. ‘Yo Momma’ jokes bear testimony to this bizarre truth, that there are moments when we will enjoy precisely that which has been deemed utterly distasteful. In fact, it is entirely acceptable to call a man any manner of names, to insult his upbringing, his occupation, the faithfulness of his wife, his education, his love life—if and only if he laughs. Laughter negates insult.

By what witchcraft? I’m not sure. But its seems that all jokes are inside jokes in that they bring two men into the same sphere to dwell in communion with each other. It’s impossible not to like the man who makes you laugh, for in that moment of laughter you share with him the joke. You are his brother.

Now if a joke allows a man to bear an insult to his person, and bear it willingly, then surely a joke would allow a man to bear an insult to his worldview and his philosophy, and bear it willingly? Debate is, when all is said and done, the constructive insult of another man’s philosophy. This does not necessitate that it be bitter. In fact, it demands that it be good-natured. It demands that the insulting, divisive nature of debate be elevated by the communicative, brotherly nature of humor, if one desires to convince his opponent.

I look to the debates of G.K. Chesterton and Bernard Shaw as my example, the former a Catholic and a distributist, the latter an atheist and a socialist. Their ability to joke—and to stay friends—in the midst of such heated debate is no accident. It is precisely because they could joke that the debates were so heated—there was a real danger of someone being converted. Shaw, in defending his desire to abolish private property, said:

"If I own a large part of Scotland I can turn the people off the land practically into the sea, or across the sea. I can take women in child-bearing and throw them into the snow and leave them there. That has been done. I can do it for no better reason than I think it is better to shoot deer on the land than allow people to live on it. They might frighten the deer.
But now compare that with the ownership of my umbrella. As a matter of fact the umbrella I have to-night belongs to my wife; but I think she will permit me to call it mine for the purpose of the debate. Now I have a very limited legal right to the use of that umbrella. I cannot do as I like with it. For instance, certain passages in Mr. Chesterton’s speech tempted me to get up and smite him over the head with my umbrella. I may presently feel inclined to smite Mr. Belloc. But should I abuse my right to do what I like with my property—with my umbrella—in this way I should soon be made aware—possibly by Mr. Belloc’s fist—that I cannot treat my umbrella as my own property in the way in which a landlord can treat his land. I want to destroy ownership in order that possession and enjoyment may be raised to the highest point in every section of the community. That, I think, is perfectly simple..."

To which G.K. Chesterton responds:

"Among the bewildering welter of fallacies which Mr. Shaw has just given us, I prefer to deal first with the simplest. When Mr. Shaw refrains from hitting me over the head with his umbrella, the real reason—apart from his real kindness of heart, which makes him tolerant of the humblest of the creatures of God—is not because he does not own his umbrella, but because he does not own my head. As I am still in possession of that imperfect organ, I will proceed to use it to the confutation of some of his other fallacies...
I fully agree with Mr. Shaw, and speak as strongly as he would speak, of the abomination and detestable foulness and sin of landlords who drove poor people from their land in Scotland and elsewhere. It is quite true that men in possession of land have committed these crimes; but I do not see why wicked officials under a socialistic state could not commit these crimes. That has nothing to do with the principle of ownership in land. In fact these very Highland crofters, these very people thus abominably outraged and oppressed, if you asked them what they want would probably say, 'I want to own my own croft; I want to own my own land.'"

Perhaps I’m the only one who enjoyed all that umbrella talk, but I hope I am not the only who recognizes that the exchange of these two men is miles beyond—in quality, clarity, and convictions—the binary, right/left, atheist/theist debates we witness today.

The current God Debate does not seek to make its opponent laugh, but to make an already sympathizing audience sneer. One wonders whether debates aim to convince at all—an object which demands the respect and love of the other—or whether they exist entirely to publicly dismiss others, a thrill unique to those—myself included—who forsake the pursuit of truth for that of popularity. Sarcasm, wit and humor—which all have their place—are wasted. Humor is one of the most powerful weapons human communication can wield, for it makes a friend out of an enemy, but we are too intent using it for the sake of our already-nodding audience to bother using it for the sake of conveying the truth.

Chesterton said “It is the test of a good religion whether you can joke about it,” and this seems to me true, for to joke about your philosophy is to invite others into it—everyone can laugh at a joke. Let us not be so smug as to disdain joining in.
Originally posted at Bad Catholic. Used with permission.
(Image credit: Wikimedia)

Marc Barnes

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Marc Barnes is an English major at The Franciscan University of Steubenville. He writes at Patheos.com for the Catholic Channel, focusing on bringing Catholicism to secular culture through natural law, humor, and ADD-powered philosophical outbursts. He recently created and released the website 1flesh.org with some friends, a grassroots movement in opposition to artificial contraception, promoting natural methods of family planning. He has also written for Crisis Magazine, LiveAction.org, LifeSiteNews, and his work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal. He loves blowing things up, and has a man-crush on Soren Kierkegaard. Follow Marc's blog at Bad Catholic.

Note: Our goal is to cultivate serious and respectful dialogue. While it's OK to disagree—even encouraged!—any snarky, offensive, or off-topic comments will be deleted. Before commenting please read the Commenting Rules and Tips. If you're having trouble commenting, read the Commenting Instructions.

  • Is it really acceptable to insult someone if he laughs at it? Many people laugh to try and hide the fact that they are really hurt. Shaw's joke was at his own expense. That is often the more charitable way. Laugh at yourself.

  • C. R. Wiley

    There is often laugher when two strong men wrestle--it comes from mutual regard for the strength of the opponent. I think we see that here with Shaw and Chesterton.

  • We have a unique challenge today because of the internet: most of our interactions in these type of debates do not take place face to face. For many reasons this makes laughing together much more difficult. Also (assuming my impression is correct), university departments seem more segregated today which limits intellectual and social interaction between disciplines. Finally (and Chesterton and Belloc would mightily agree), beer, beer is very important.

    • Elson

      beer is very important.

      You got that right! Some of the best laughs I have ever had were over pints of brew or the equivalent thereof.....even while in the midst of serious discussion.

  • Loreen Lee

    Quote: The power of humor is not that it makes the serious frivolous, but that it unites opposites, and binds contraries in communion.

    I believe that the reason 'tragedy' and 'comedy' (in the context of Greek literature) are conveyed as masks, is because they are complimentary and both are relevant in 'binding contraries'. Indeed, as in the biblical story of the gentleman who vows to sacrifice his daughter in the event that he wins his battles, and even in the case of the predetermined Oedipus tragedy, I would argue that there is ;'comedy', and that this 'irony' in the 'laughter of the Gods', has a basis in the irony that can be found when one contemplates one's own limited situation with respect to the over-powering dictates of 'Truth'. One can indeed be 'humbled' by such truth, and may I suggest this 'displeasure' is one of the reasons why people can be 'insulted' by even trivial instances of the need to 'see' reality, as it is.

    This irony, is visible in Socrates, and even, may I suggest some of the sayings of Jesus Christ. May I argue that this relation between tragedy and comedy is not always 'seen'. It demands from us a certain' objectivity', and perhaps an appreciation, not only of the argument, but as your post suggests, the person involved.

    The tragic and 'comic' elements have often been separated, especially when comedy is considered as trivial, as when the nobility are given the tragic elements within the drama, and the comedy is relegated to the 'lower classes'. Indeed the 'comic' is often considered a 'poor helpless 'bloke'', and we can picture the tears welling up behind the painted masque of the clown. Within the proper context, however, it is irony, the laughter of the Gods, which is the basis of all humor, and all smiles, when even amid all the tears we are able to find the release of laughter.

    However, laughter can be cruel. There is a difference between laughing at someone and laughing with someone. Unless one understands the impact of one's irony, sarcasm, humor, a person, may I suggest the intent could be construed, and indeed be of 'ill intent'. The first rule of a good comedian, then is firstly, to 'know one's audience'. Thus although I did not get the subtleties of the humor in this post, as in a lot of cases, I will just 'let it go', because I don't have to be 'struck over the head' with it.

  • Elson


    • Loreen Lee

      Yes! And then there's Dante's 'Divine Comedy'.

      • Elson

        I do have a few other things that I would like to contribute to the discussion....nothing outrageous....but do not want to risk being banned as I enjoy the site.

        Comments deleted? I don't mind, especially if I am given a reason. But apparently, there have been a good number of persons deleted and banned arbitrarily from SN, according to the comments on another site, which I shall not name. Just wanted to ensure that this "alleged fact" is known or debunked by other commenters...Notice, I said "alleged". I hope that this comment is not going to get me banned to the "outer darkness". Perhaps there are others who can verify ,dispute or outright reject what I have said in regards to this matter. Thank you.

        • Loreen Lee

          As I assume that you directed this query to me, (because it is a reply) but also generally to all readers, although I obviously do not manage the site, I have been with it for some time, and I assure you that there has generally been a warning, indeed several, before persons have been banned from the site. If this is all that concerns you, speak up. You won't know how your comments will be received unless/until you post them.

          • Elson

            I supposed that I noticed that you were one of the longtime participants on the site....and that it would be safer to post a comment to you rather than post a "new" comment on an article. I suppose that I thought that my comment would stand more of a chance of being read by more participants if posted as a comment to one of your comments than it would have been otherwise. I mean that as a compliment.... Peace..

          • Loreen Lee

            No need to be so hesitant nor to offer any kind of 'apologetics'! Thanks for the compliment. It's hard to know if people appreciate what you are saying in your comments. In my case, rarely do I get thumbs up. But I post: l. to express myself.and develop my ability to communicate 2. Sometimes to understand better the article in question, for addressing an issue directly helps very often to clarify what your thinking is. 3. To be one of the few 'female voices' on line.
            Hope the above points contribute to the development of a confidence based on the fact that you too have something to say. Am looking forward to reading your critique/response to this article. Take care.

          • Elson

            Thank you for the tips. I always enjoy your comments. You are a sharp lady.

          • Elson

            Hmmm.....my comment which I posted this morning...one by the way which you gave an upvote has been uncerimoniously removed without my having been given a reason. Though I can imagine why since it was a bit critical of the article being mundane and not pertaining to the "Big Questions". It contained no criticism of the author. So much for warnings etc.
            Lesson learned....do not be critical of SN articles.

          • Loreen Lee

            Hope I have made a subscription to this blogspot before they delete this comment as well.
            Lesson learned: Take the advice of Oscar Wilde seriously.

          • Elson

            Yes....they can kill you in cyberspace....;-) Thanks.

          • Loreen Lee

            I checked out 'outshine the sun' but the page directed me back here. Don't know copyrite rules, etc. re internet communication.

          • Elson


          • Loreen Lee

            It's OK Elson. I am familiar with your comment, and actually am quite amazed with a kind of courage you demonstrate in posting it again, here - even if the print is 'fine print'. You have to read the fine print.
            What concerns me is that I feel from your example that there can be many instances where the responses of atheists could be misunderstood with respect to the intention. When I visited the site you recommended I couldn't help but feel that generally, people were expressing hurt even as the result of insult in being 'excommunicated' from this site of Strange Notions. I wondered if some mediation (and even meditation) would/could be helpful. I for one would like to see all of you back here.

            Perhaps the link you have established in these comments between 'Strange Notions', and it's offshoot 'Estranged Notions' (and I commend the originator of this derivative term for sheer brilliance). will have a 'good' rather than 'difficult' result. I for one, do not feel it is necessary, nor in the spirit of good humor, even if it was my prerogative, to silence the dissent represented by the blog - outshinethesun. I feel the tone even is possibly mainly the result of feeling 'left out'.

            Although you mentioned in your 'critique' that this post did not address a life issue, perhaps you would reconsider, and find that humor, and its purposes does indeed represent a most important aspect of the 'life process'. Perhaps in this regard, a little humor, and good will, is needed on both sides of the debate between the 'estranged' and the 'strange'.

            My main criticism of the post in question is perhaps the use of the phrase in the title: (the effect of laughter on insult). This phrase, and others I would suggest could bear a little rewrite, for clarity, specificity, and 'charity'. Laughter is not a cause, for instance, but an effect, and there has been too much laughter without a smile on this site, as well as what I read from the estranged. I would not want to see more laughter adding more insult to injury, and I do feel that there is a reason why all of you identify with the 'estranged'.

            It is only through forgiveness and forgetting, that one can summon the resources to address even what is considered as 'smirk', as sincere attempts to express perceptions of Catholic doctrine that are not understood. Rather than summon up laughter, these issues need to be addressed. The responses by the estranged atheists are indeed various expressions of laughter whose effect on felt insult need not be addressed by silence or more of the same, especially when it would be possible to interpret many of the 'critiques' as efforts to understand what certainly could be considered to be very 'Strange Notions'.


          • Elson

            I just reposted my original comment and it seems to have passed this time. One of those mysteries that SN sometimes refers to. A miracle perhaps.....just a feeble attempt at humor.

          • Loreen Lee

            Hopefully, such a remark can be the impetus for exploring on this site just what constitutes a miracle. I have ideas of my own for instance, which may not be considered 'kosher'. And indeed, there are many interpretations within the diversity of belief within Catholicism generally. But again, it is through education on such issues that light can be brought to all of these 'strange notions', towards which it is possible that even a devout Catholic can meet same with a sense of 'estrangement'.

          • Elson

            Thank you for encouraging us all to follow the "middle way"....as you seem to be setting the example. I suppose we could all try being a little less testy. and a bit more sensitive to the feelings of others....without kowtowing to one another. We still have to be real of course.

          • Loreen Lee

            Ah Elson. I suspect now that you have been exploring many different religious philosophies/beliefs. I am with you there, in what you say. I trust this venture into humor shows that it is not only the argument that is important. That's all. And as you say, Namaste.

          • Susan

            I assure you that there has generally been a warning, indeed several, before persons have been banned from the site.

            Hi Loreen. I can assure you there has not. Lately, some final warnings have been issued but for most of the history of this site, that was not the case. Recently, Amos and Solange were banned and both had received final warnings. I have been issued a final warning. Those are on the record. The rest are made up out of whole cloth.
            There are at least a dozen people out there who were banned who were given no final warning by their reports, people I have never known to lie. I've been here since the beginning and saw no final warning in a single case.
            I know that's the story you were given repeatedly by Brandon but there was no evidence, just his word against at least a dozen intelligent, highly educated, thoughtful and honest people with no evidence to support it.

          • Loreen Lee

            I have been introduced to 'Outshine the Sun', although from a personal perspective I do not feel I have the energy to succeed in such a task. I simply must conclude that 'warnings' occur on an individual level, and are not made public, as they used to be many moons ago. I do believe in both empirical evidence and testimony of a witness however; the first being most important in scientific endeavors and the latter relevant more, I suggest, to religion. I can only hope that these differences can somehow be resolved. If not, perhaps I can visit you on occasion for as I have expressed I personally find estranged notions can be as interesting as those that are merely strange. In either case, it is very difficult to come up with absolutely convincing evidence. One has to rely on one's own judgment, and simply follow the 'rules of the game'. Namaste.

          • Susan

            Hi Loreen,

            I know you said what you said sincerely.

            I simply must conclude that 'warnings' occur on an individual level, and are not made public

            I see no reason to conclude that. The facts seem to indicate that everyone banned except for Amos and Solange (both banned very recently)received no final warning, or any sort of warning that would seem to justify their banning.

            Another fact is that there was a huge overnight purge (the third, I believe) in which a month's worth of the purged's comments were deleted and Brandon claimed that was an accident, when Disqus doesn't work that way.

            There is no reason to accept Brandon's statement on the subject when at least a dozen others agree unanimously that his statement is false and when Brandon refused to produce a speck of evidence when asked repeatedly to do so.

            I know you mean well. I'm just suggesting that you not "assure" people that warnings were issued when they almost certainly weren't and you have no good reason to state that they were.

            In either case, it is very difficult to come up with absolutely convincing evidence

            I know you were being nice and would never willfully misrepresent things You're very nice. But if you think about it, why do you believe that people were warned? The evidence overwhelmingly suggest that they weren't and no evidence that they were has been produced.

            I am sick of the subject but I can't stand a successful error.
            I'm astonished how quickly untruths become accepted as truths if they are repeated often enough.

            It's important that we remain vigilant or reason goes out the window.

          • Loreen Lee

            I know you said what you said sincerely.

            Well, I tried. Think I'll just stick to typing quote.

            Thanks Susan. You have hit on a weak point of mine. I don't like arguments, and my daughter has even called me a people pleaser., especially when I sense any kind of futility in the exercise. (My daughter is a lawyer, grin grin and spends much time in data mining, or evidence finding, something which I am most pleased about leaving to her, grin grin).

            These comments, as they are being 'allowed to be' posted on Strange Notions, will obviously be read by Brandon, and are not being deleted. That in itself gives me some 'hope' that there is some 'hope' in this whole exercise, and if it is a matter of conscience. that the 'evidence' is available and no party, particularly Brandon, is in relation to these ongoing developments, 'in the dark'.

            Firstly, in matters of judicial proceedings, I must let you know of a particular bias of mine. It does fatigue me to constantly hear cries for evidence with respect to dialogue concerning faith issues. This, to my understanding is indeed a futile issue, and an emphasis that is misplaced. We speak of 'empirical evidence, for a 'reason'. Faith based statements are in contrast to concepts available to the 'understanding', metaphysical/supernatural concepts call them what you will. The only empirical evidence possible I would suggest would be the appearance of 'miracles', which could be described as faith based evidences which conform not to our mundane empirical realities, but to idealities, whether these be hallucinatory or 'real'.

            But an 'apologetics' on this issue would take many many posts, and even then the possibility would be 'unbelievable' to a confirmed atheist. I simply feel that it is the case of the atheist flogging a 'dead horse' issue, although this is not saying that Catholicism, or indeed religion, or God, is 'dead'. Are there not other avenues of dissent that could produce more productive dialogues, and in which the quest is for more understanding. Empirical evidence should be directed towards 'testing' hypothesis within a particular scientific methodology which cannot incorporate all aspects of human life, as for example literature, art, etc. etc. as well as religion. The horse 'neighs'.

            So it is with evidences regarding very often 'personal matters'. My original statements concerning 'warnings' goes back a long time, to the first purge. As in that case which I remember particularly well, the impetus was as I understand. to limit comments of a derogatory nature and I must assume that this is the continued motivation although I agree that there is 'no evidence' that public statements directed to individuals continues in this mater. You have given ample illustrations of your dissatisfaction with the current state of affairs, which means that the main question is whether or not this is a prevention of 'freedom of speech'. But I am not the person to adjudicate this controversy, as I have not even taken the time to 'read the guidelines' of what is 'allowed' to be spoken within the rules that govern discourse on this site.

            It does seem though, that the matter is one of 'winning the argument'. In this case, too, there is questions possibly as to why the debate continues, and I do not want to speculate on all possible reasons why the atheist does not want to give up the cause. It could even be construed as complimentary to Brandon and the 'Catholic' (but not universal) situation this represents.that there is such a need to continue the protestations.

            I do 'believe' you. It is indeed highly possible that Brandon has taken upon himself an idealized purpose of erasing from the annals of history all remarks that detract from making Strange Notions a paradigm of polite conversation. If recent tactics have indeed undermined the purvue of reason, it would i will again assert, be a matter of conscience, as to whether the 'evangelical' purposes of this blog maintain the ancient tradition of martyrdom in the cause of 'spreading the word'. But I suggest that the issue revolves around the characteristics of tone rather than content, and the futility of continuing to demand 'empirical' evidence for matters that are not 'scientific'
            . I do not want to be a mediator in this regard, but in a posting which is directed towards the establishment of charity through the use of humor, I have already addressed this aspect of the dilemma in another combox. There is a sense in which all can be construed as 'evidence': every action, word and thought we take in the immediacy of the 'now'. But that would be 'evidence' within the broader context of 'final judgment' that is a religious rather than the 'scientific' paradigm of 'truth'. .In that context, I trust that this matter of conscience will be addressed by all, Brandon as well as your 'selves'. I regret that I cannot server as the 'Paraclete' in this matter.


  • Funny makes me laugh and sometimes think too. Mr Barnes might consider the humour and sarcasm of the Great Agnostic, my namesake, Robert Green Ingersoll. A contemporary of Shaw and Chesterton, civil war hero and arguably the greatest orator those United States ever produced. He was controversial, but wildly popular among theists. Many of his speeches are on YouTube.

    Douglas Adams' humour on religions and theism is, I'd say not only witty, but philosophically thought provoking.

    Then there is Stephen Fry, rightly named the Oscar Wilde of our age. Eddie Izzard, Ricky Gervais, Louis C.K. How do the theists here feel about their jabs at religion? I hope they can take the teasing in the spirit Mr Barnes advises.

    I post a quick vid from Fry in the spirit of fellowship. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=C_3TdQolVRA

    • Loreen Lee

      Compassion will surely give to laughter, the needed smile.

    • Jakeithus

      As brought up earlier in the thread, an important part about being able to use humour to create camaraderie and overcome insult is the ability to be self deprecating and use humour at your own expense. At least in the case of Ricky Gervais, I have never once seen that trait expressed when it comes to atheism or his own beliefs. I wouldn't call it teasing, I'd just call it being a dick.

      Louis CK seems a better example. A quick google search brings up atheists criticizing him for jokes he made about "arrogant atheists".

      In my mind, the best example at comedy that cuts both ways is South Park. I can appreciate their jabs at religion because I know they take jabs at everything.

      • Have a look at Gervais series called "Derek" and you can see an example of his compassion.

        I honestly don't care if comedy builds comraderie or not. It should make you laugh and if it does, great. If not, ignore it.

        • Jakeithus

          As I haven't seen it, I'll have to take your word for it (although I have heard about the big heartedness of "Derek" from other sources). Maybe you can answer this, but a perusal of episode summaries doesn't seem to show any mention of religious themes. Is Ricky capable of a humourous take on religion that isn't simply part of his regular dickish atheist persona?
          "I honestly don't care if comedy builds comraderie or not" - I'm hoping you don't mean this as an approval of jokes at the expense of one particular group or individual (ie racist or sexist jokes). If it is not, then in fact there is an aspect of building camaraderie important to the craft. A comedian who tells jokes about the difference between men and women but only disparages women, is not as good of a comedian as one who touches a shared experience.

          Laughter as a way to soften disagreement or insult in matters of religious debate is all well and good, but it requires a shared understanding and ability to laugh at oneself first. Ricky Gervais (and in my opinion many atheists these days) seem to lack those traits. This is not to say that theists always do a better job at it.

          • It all depends on the context. When Peter Sellers reinforced negative stereotypes about Indians in the Party, it is arguable out of bounds and offensive. When Russell Peters or Chris Rock does it is not.

            It is a very complex and subtle situation. I've worked in comedian and human rights law, and honestly my views are too subtle to communicate here.

            The most important thing to consider is context. I think comedy should not and never purports to be taken seriously. This does not mean it cannot be hurtful.

  • Loreen Lee

    If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh. Otherwise they'll kill you.
    Oscar Wilde.

  • Michael Murray

    Chesterton and Shaw were obviously old friends and sparring partners engaging in a debate where tone of voice and body language where available to facilitate communication. I don't see what we learn from that which aids communication on the internet with total strangers and without tone of voice or body language. It's a difficult thing to do made more difficult on this site when attempts to lighten the message with levity so easily fall foul of those Hunting the Snark.

  • Elson

    According to StrangeNotions Each day you'll find articles, and rich discussion concerning life's Big Questions.

    I have difficulty seeing where this article fits into the category of life' Big Questions.

    SN seems to be trying to over intellectualize and over analyze a mundane topic thinking that this will somehow result in "rich" discussion pertaining to life's "Big Questions". Some may find it mildly interesting, and it may provide some "comic" relief to some who are stressed from having to come up with creative articles dealing with the 'big questions";-)

    I remember that we used a similar tactic at times when writing English essays when we ran out of words. The acronym for it BTBWB.

    No offence intended to the author of the article.It would have been a good fit for Macleans or similar magazine but it just did not seem to belong in this venue. I am looking forward to interesting articles pertaining to the big questions when SN gets back on track..

  • One of my favorite songs as a Catholic is the caricature of Papists in the song, The Old Orange Flute. Instead of insulting, it's good fun.

    • Loreen Lee

      Found it. Good ole' Irish Catholic 'laugh at one's own' humor, I take it.Don't think the 'Orange men' were burned at the stake though! grin grin.

  • Elson

    I will try this again. I posted the same comment about 6 hours ago and it was removed, by who and for what reason I don't know. Below is the comment exactly as it was posted this morning. Just expressing my opinion.

    According to Strange Notions Each day you'll find articles, and rich discussion concerning life's Big Questions.
    I have difficulty seeing where this article fits into the category of life' Big Questions.
    SN seems to be trying to over intellectualize and over analyze a mundane
    topic thinking that this will somehow result in "rich" discussion
    pertaining to life's "Big Questions". Some may find it mildly
    interesting, and it may provide some "comic" relief to some who are
    stressed from having to come up with creative articles dealing with the
    'big questions";-)
    I remember that we used a similar tactic at times when writing English essays
    when we ran out of words. The acronym for it BTBWB.

    No offence intended to the author of the article.It
    would have been a good fit for Macleans or similar magazine but it just
    did not seem to belong in this venue. I am looking forward to
    interesting articles pertaining to the big questions when SN gets back
    on track..

  • pedroerik

    Chesterton: eagle, as usual in his answers. Thanks for your post,Barnes.

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