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  • Writer's pictureD. G. Martin

Not for the First Time

Cartoon of an old man shaking his fist at a cloud.
Prepare for a fistin'!

Is it better to write nothing for a Tuesday Drivel if I have nothing about which to drivel, or should I attempt it anyway, knowing that it may well be an inferior attempt or miss the mark?

Speaking of missing the mark, I did that last week. Totally missed the mark. Humor is such a subjective thing. 

To set the stage without giving away details that otherwise should remain a mystery, I responded to a buddy’s social media message with a humorous take on the subject about which he posted, and it was not well received.

In short, this has led me into a long and drawn out thought process about humor and how some people just don’t have it. 

Getting offended is quickly becoming our nation’s favorite past time, replacing whatever it was that replaced baseball in the early 2000’s, or thereabouts. Video games? Maybe for my generation. But that’s not the point. 

As a writer, I shouldn’t really care if my writing offends anyone. Actually, I should be highly disappointed in myself if it does not. That is what a writer is supposed to do, right? I mean, not expressly. Some writers do set out to offend on purpose.

No, I’m talking about inadvertently offending some people just because whatever you’re writing about happens to stick up their craw on that particular day. 

I’m reminded of the banned books lists whenever I think about writing that offends. If you look on any banned books list, you’ll find some good books and some bad books. In this case “good” and “bad” are as highly objective or subjective as they need to be, but for now, we can just leave it at the concept that I have not come across any book that, in my opinion, should be banned or restricted for any reason. 

Maybe age appropriateness? 

Wow, there’s a big one that nobody ever wants to touch. Unless their kids are the ones in question. Ah, right. Parents. The filters of knowledge through which children have access or restriction. There’s nothing to discuss here. Parents have the power, and I’m never going to argue they should not.

A banned book is the most sure way to get it read. I’d love to be the author of a banned book one day. That’s it. I’m starting a bucket list at 35. Not because I see the end coming, no, but because being the author of a banned book needs to be on a bucket list. Any bucket list.

Yours. Mine. The dog’s. Let’s get them all banned!

But a banned and deleted social media post? Not as prestigious a distinction or accomplishment, sure, but maybe it’s a start. 

I can’t control the humors of other people. If they want to get offended, then I am thankfully free of the burden of approval for them to do so. 

In the end, I’m getting tired of having to watch what I say for fear that there are those out there who want to be offended and seek out the nearest and easiest opportunity to do so. 

I know, I shouldn’t say that, should I? 


Picture from here

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