Monday, 6 August 2007

The world's funniest joke was written by Spike Milligan

Did you think that "The world’s funniest joke" was just a joke? Well, think again! What most of us probably just think of as one of the bizarre quirks of Monty Python humor has actually been the subject of psychological study at the University of Hertfordshire. Professor Richard Wiseman devised a set of experiments, the LaughLab, in order to investigate the psychology of humor. As with all research in experimental psychology (and many other disciplines for that matter), there are probably a number of objections against Wiseman’s methods and interpertation of the data, but never the less it is an interesting study (I think there is still a lot to be learned about how human mind works through this kind of studies), and, admittedly, I find the joke pretty funny:

The joke goes as follows: Two hunters are out in the woods in New Jersey when one of them collapses. He doesn't seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed.
The other guy whips out his phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps 'My friend is dead! What can I do?' The operator says: 'Calm down, I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead.' There is a silence, then a shot is heard. Back on the phone, the guy says 'OK, now what?'

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