Humour is in the eye of the beholder. (And the ear, and the funny-bone, and the perspective life has given you.)
Humour might be a smirk, a raised eyebrow, a sigh or ripple of recognition.
Humour might cause laughter. Laugh out loud laughter. Snorting. A spilling of some bodily functions.
So, yes, it’s subjective.
The ultimate litmus test is the live performance of a humourous Stereo Story, where tone and timing – of both the narrator and the band – is crucial.
Of the 560 stories on this website we’ve got nearly 30 stories that we’ve listed under ‘Humour’, kicking off with this year’s jazz poems from Bill Arnott and then delving deep into our back catalogue.
Some stories are amusing from the get-go (‘In the end, we all hated Jill’, from Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You). Some you’ve got to bide your time a little to appreciate the context. Here are a few teasers…
I did something that any proud person would do. I stole Wally De Backer’s half eaten bag of Doritos while he wasn’t looking. Then I ate them in the cab on the way home. Well I don’t know if it was even such a grandiose act as stealing, because he had just kind of discarded them on a chair. I’ve still got the packet. – Bianca Simpson (Wait For You by The Basics)
I don’t remember all that much about what it is actually like. I know that I want it to happen. That after all this time together I am kind of aching for it. That he is gentle. That we still have our school uniforms half on. That just as we are finishing, his Mum scares the shit out of us by banging on the barricaded door and yelling “What are you doing in there? Come downstairs! Your chops are ready!”. – Jane Leonard (The River by Springsteen)
James Reyne was unable to mask his concern, yelling into the microphone: “We are not coming back on until you have all stopped fighting!” And with that, the band hurriedly disappeared from the stage.- Smokie Dawson (The Boys Light Up by Australian Crawl)
The feminist in me battles with the linguist, and I waver between correcting his English and biting his arm. I do neither, as the song on stage floats into my awareness. – Rijn Collins (Sunday Morning Coming Down by Kris Kristofferson)
OMG! WTF? OTT! There are not enough three-letter abbreviations in the English language to describe just how deranged this song is. Once heard, never forgotten. – Andy Griffiths (Crazy Horses by The Osmonds)
Plus stories by Danny Katz, David Oke, Markus Zusak, Zoe Krupka, Brian Nankervis…