“I bet Jon Stewart has a huge right frontal lobe…” -Dr. Katherine P. Rankin
The quote, on the very quotable and snarktastic JS, is from a New York Times article on the comprehension of sarcasm in the brain. Some, due to head injury or certain types of dementia, cannot detect sarcasm. It’d be interesting to hear about where in the brain snark originates (rather than where and how the brain processes it).
I wonder too about the social dimension of sarcasm. Why is it used? What demographic uses it? It doesn’t seem to be limited to geographical area (although I thought so when I first moved to the Midwest and have since learned to appreciate different… flavors of snark) or education level (I’m sure we can all think of some painfully dull academic-types). I think my environment was to blame. I grew up in a cult of sardonic humor. Dad- king of deadpans. Sis- quite the snarkypants. The friends I am close to are all sarcastic to some degree- but those are the sort of people I find interesting.
Nonetheless, I realize that it is my responsibility to communicate effectively with those around me. I should have been issued with a translator or a warning system to alert those nearby of impending snark. Here’s a very simple exercise in an attempt to align people with my warped thinking.
The inverse of the following statements is true:
I didn’t watch Rainbow Brite and She-Ra just for the dumb equines! I watched those shows for the well-rounded and complex title characters.
I like dark. Does that makes me a dark person? Meh.