Only Those With Superior Intelligence And A Dark Sense Of Humor Will Laugh At These Jokes


Only Highly Intelligent People Will Laugh At These Jokes

Laughing at the following jokes doesn’t make you a mean person—just a highly intelligent one, with a dark sense of humor.

A guy walks into a rooftop bar and sits next to another man. “What are you drinking?” he asks.

“Magic beer,” he says.

“Oh, yeah? And what’s so magical about it?”

Then the second guy swigs some beer, dives off the roof, flies around the building and finally returns to his seat with a triumphant smile.

“Incredible!” the man says. “Let me try some of that!” He then grabs the beer. He downs it, leaps off the roof —and plummets 15 stories to the ground.

The bartender shakes his head saying: “You know, you’re a real jerk when you’re drunk, Superman.”

Let’s forget for a second whether or not that poor man survived his fall (if it'll make you feel better, let’s say Trampoline Man was waiting on the ground). The real question is whether you found this joke funny, sick, or a little bit of both.

A study published in Cognitive Processing journal shows that your reaction to such jokes could indicate your intelligence. A team of psychologists concludes that those of us who appreciate dark humor—defined as “humor that treats sinister subjects like death, disease, deformity, handicap or warfare with bitter amusement and presents such tragic, distressing or morbid topics in humorous terms”—might have higher IQs, demonstrate lower aggression, and resist negative emotions more efficiently than those who turn up their noses at it.

To test this relation between the sense of humor and intelligence, researchers had 156 male and female participants read twelve bleak cartoons from The Black Book by German cartoonist Uli Stein. (One of them paraphrasing a classic joke, demonstrates a mortician reaching deep into a cadaver as a nurse muses. “The autopsy is finished; he is only looking for his wristwatch.”) Participants indicated whether they understood the jokes and whether they found them funny. Then they took some basic IQ tests and answered some questionnaires about their mood, aggressive tendencies, and educational background.

As the results demonstrated, participants who both comprehended and enjoyed the dark humor jokes had higher IQs, and reported less aggressive tendencies, compared to those who didn't. Incidentally, the participants who least liked the jokes showed the highest levels of aggression as well as the worst moods of the bunch. The latter point makes sense if you consider the widely-studied health benefits of laughter and even smiling; if you can't greet negativity with playful optimism, then, of course, you will feel worse.

But what about the connection to intelligence? According to the researchers, understanding dark humor jokes takes a bit more mental gymnastics than processing a knock-knock joke. It is “a complex information-processing task” which requires parsing multiple layers of meaning, while simultaneously creating a bit of emotional distance from the 'dark' content.

That emotional maneuvering is what sets dark humor jokes apart from puns. Puns pit your brain’s right and left hemispheres against each other as you process a single word’s multiple meanings, but they usually don’t force you out of your emotional comfort zone.

According to Tina Fey: “If you want to make an audience laugh, you dress a man up like an old lady and push her down the stairs. If you want to make comedy writers laugh, you push an actual old lady down the stairs.”

Almost any joke that relies on wordplay can put your brain to work. Still, dark humor jokes require a bit more emotional control to earn a laugh. Give your mind a spin with these jokes proven to make anybody sound clever, or, if you want to test your black humor cognizance, here are some dark jokes from the Reader’s Digest comedy crypt that will exercise your hardened funny bone:

• “‘I’m sorry’ and ‘I apologize’ mean the same thing. Except at a funeral.” —Demetri Martin

• Q: What has four legs and one arm? A: A happy pit bull.

• “Cats have nine lives. Makes them ideal for experimentation.” —Jimmy Carr

• Q: Why don’t cannibals eat clowns? A: Because they taste funny.

• “I have a vest. If I had my arms cut off, it would be a jacket.” —Mitch Hedberg

• Q: What did Kermit the frog say at Jim Henson’s funeral? A: Nothing.

• “If at first, you don’t succeed, then skydiving definitely isn’t for you.” —Steven Wright

References: Mystical Raven, Reader’s Digest


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Thinking Humanity: Only Those With Superior Intelligence And A Dark Sense Of Humor Will Laugh At These Jokes
Only Those With Superior Intelligence And A Dark Sense Of Humor Will Laugh At These Jokes
Laughing at the following jokes doesn’t make you a mean person—just a highly intelligent one, with a dark sense of humor.
Thinking Humanity
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