Monday, December 7, 2009

Source of Humor: Implicature

In my Structures course, we just finished a section on spoken discourse; one of the features of spoken discourse is that you can say one thing but mean another (implicature).  Today I found a link that took me to a repository of hilarious videos that were performed on the Sketch Show; one such video is titled "Can you take a picture for us?"

The humor of the video revolves around the misinterpretation of the title question: When the first guy asks the question, "Can you take a picture for us?" he is implying that he would like the second guy to take a picture of him and his (girl)friend.  However, the second guy takes the question literally and simply takes a picture of the scenery before walking on.

This humor is similar to the frustration you might get if you ask someone, "Do you know what time it is?" and they simply respond, "Yes."

Two more videos from the same group that you, too, might find funny are the following:

There are many more of those videos, but I think three in one posting is quite enough.

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