Humor Columnist Thankful for Space to try and Make People Laugh
by Scott Spinelli
Absolutely nothing can compare to these last two semesters. Under some crazy set of rules that govern the universe, I was allowed to fill the space this column provides.
Want to read a funny story? Though I don’t think anyone ever responds in the negative to a question like that.
“Ehh…funny would be OK, I guess. Do you have a mildly depressing story? I’m in the mood.”
On top of that, those stories aren’t usually very funny if they need to be prefaced like that. Instead, are you up for a mildly entertaining, more revealing
than really funny story?
This column wasn’t supposed to be given to me. In fact, a friend of mine had spoken to me about her desire to do the column. We spoke over the summer about it, and, like the snake I am, I inquired about it with the folks over at The Daily Orange. Long story short, I got the column, she didn’t. Surprisingly, she still speaks to me.
Writing this column every week has been nothing short of a true joy. Then again, that may be just a bit of an overstatement.
Was I annoyed when I’d read the paper and find jokes of mine taken out? Yes. How about when I’d read the paper and an old column was reprinted instead of a new one? Definitely. Or, what about when new jokes were added in? Three for three.
In all seriousness, I’ve had a great time writing this. The one thing it’s done for me is it gave me a taste of what it might feel like to be “cool.” I’d imagine it’s how fraternity guys feel every second of the day. As you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking, “Who does this kid think he is? What a loser.”
Well, doubters, I’ll say this: I’ve run into people all over the place who had a ton of (likely phony) good things to say about my column. However, for whatever reason, people felt like as long as they were talking to me about the column and had read just one, they had the greatest new and funny idea for my next one.
“You should write a column about the two blonde girls you met at Chuck’s!
“You know what would be a good column, this (insert exceedingly normal, everyday social situation here)! This would be a good column, am I right, or am I right?”
Maybe it’s what some folks like to call “beer courage.” Maybe this campus is just teeming with great sitcom writers. Who knows?
Let me also take this space to say that being recognized in public, ever, by anyone, is one of the most amazing things that’s ever happened to me. I’ve been at family gatherings where not everyone recognizes me. I don’t want to make it like I get showered with praise, girls throwing panties at me, when I head through the Quad. No, not that at all. First of all, the girls are throwing bras. Second of all, it’s usually at a bar, not in the middle of the Quad. That would just be ridiculous.
Easily the craziest part of any day this or last semester would be when friends of mine would tell me their own friends (whom I didn’t know) loved the column. I’m specifically thinking about a few ladies from the women’s lacrosse team. I wasn’t even sure the athletes at this school could read, so just knowing they understood the column, regardless of how they felt about it, made me feel good.
In writing this column, I’ve thought for a while about how I wanted to end it. I didn’t want to try for one of those Seinfeld-type endings that tries to incorporate some running theme, to be “the best ever” ending of all time. Those episodes always stink and disappoint.
Instead, I decided to just say thank you. Thank you to Erinn, Matt and Andy at The D.O. for listening to me rant, for not really giving me a hard time during the first few weeks. Thank you to the girl who verbally assaulted me at Chuck’s and now stares me down every time she sees me because of this column. Thank you to anyone who’s ever read it. Thank you to anyone who’s had the courage to tell me they liked it, and even more thanks to anyone who had the real sac to say they didn’t like it.
This column isn’t something I really deserved, but it’s something I’ve really enjoyed.
Scott Spinelli’s humor column no longer will appear on any day in The Daily Orange, as long as his replacement doesn’t stink too bad. He wants, one last time, to ask people to come to his charity comedy show this Saturday. Any questions, comments, e-mail him at email@example.com. It’s been real.
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