That is the place “HA HA” stands alone. This good little blue capsule solves an issue that has all the time vexed my relationships with comedians or anybody attempting to inform me a joke — a perceived unwillingness on my half to adequately “give it up.” It’s no exaggeration to say that this Tapback has saved lots of my friendships.
I like comedy, however, to my nice detriment, I react to jokes the identical method my 6-year-old son appreciates his toys — by taking them aside and attempting to determine what makes them work. I’ve additionally by no means been an “LOL” individual, particularly over textual content. It’s uncomfortably performative, like typing “Ouch!” while you by accident sit in your automotive keys. Though I’ve my very own deep properly of want tethered to each joke I try, it nonetheless makes me anxious when folks use “LOL” too generously. Its motive feels questionable, like transactional flattery. When somebody sends multiple “LOL” in a textual content thread, I can’t assist pondering this individual is about to ask me for a experience to the airport.
For some time I most well-liked a easy “Ha,” till I discovered, by means of some detrimental suggestions, to improve to the extra emotive “Ha!” That felt like a commensurate response to a joke instructed over textual content, till the properly grew to become poisoned by that formless string of “HA”s. You’ve seen it, and also you’ve most likely achieved it: “HAHAHAHAHAHA.” Looks nice on paper, feels nice in a textual content thread, however it’s anarchic. Not solely does it make the “Ha!” out of the blue seem patronizing, it units a horrible new customary, as a result of there isn’t a customary. How many “HA”s are sufficient? In any group thread, the “HA” string shortly results in nightmare eventualities like this one:
PERSON A: [JOKE!]
PERSON B: HAHAHA
[A fine response; all is well.]
PERSON C: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
[Wow, I guess Person B hates jokes!]
When you’re improvising these “HA”s like jazz music, it turns into laborious to trace your work and simple to harm emotions. Set the bar too excessive with a dozen or extra, and, at any level sooner or later, even one fewer “HA” could counsel a curdling of your assist.
That’s the enjoyment of the “HA HA” Tapback’s neat, engaging uniformity: simply a big “HA,” and certainly one of diminished measurement beneath it, suggesting there’s most likely no extra the place that got here from. Gone are lengthy, competing “HA” strings of various lengths. Also gone are the overbearing “LOL” and the “streaming tears of laughter” emoji, which is, let’s face it, a bit a lot. The Tapback shifts your entire joke-grading system to “pass/fail,” and any professor tasked with grading that method is aware of extra persons are prone to move — perhaps even a number of who don’t should. The “HA HA” Tapback’s particular sort of magic is the best way it meets your expectations because it lowers them.
I as soon as noticed a comic current his total act to an viewers that responded, completely appropriately, with a dense wall of silence. At one level, after yet one more limp joke was acquired by nothing greater than room tone, a member of the viewers, presumably moved by the absurdity of all of it, expelled a tickled snort. The comedian onstage cocked his head barely, like a cat listening to a can opener three rooms away, and stated: “I heard a laugh. I’ll take it.” The “HA HA” Tapback streamlines an unlimited community of difficult and exhausting wants to only the one: I noticed amusing. I’ll take it.