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An unusual condition
Anyone here from Brooklyn?
I was told by my girlfriend that I have ADD.
That is, “Accolade Deficiency Disorder.”
According to her—and maybe others—I am always seeking accolades. But never receiving enough—thus, the “Deficiency” part of the disorder. This deficiency resides mostly in the area of humor. I need laughs. I must have laughs. In addition, I need to hear that I’m funny. The laughs themselves aren’t enough. I need verbal confirmation that what I just said was funny. I need the accolade. I don’t say my girlfriend’s right. I don’t say she’s wrong, either.
I’m funny. But I’m not always funny—I guess. That doesn’t stop me from trying to be funny every moment of the day with every comment and observation I make. This, as I’m sure you can tell by now, can be tiresome. Exhausting, in fact. This doesn’t stop me. I’m constantly offering— imposing, my girlfriend might claim—my humorous reflections on the world—specifically to her, all day, every day, 365 days of the year. Nights, too.
“That’s funny, isn’t it?” I’ll ask her, following a quip I make.
When we first started dating, the answer was almost always, “Yes!”
Now, as she’s gotten accustomed to my humor, her answer is, often, silence.
“What? You didn’t think that was funny?”
“Ha,” she replies. It used to be “Haha.” There’s one “ha” less now, leaving a solo, lonely and depressing “Ha.”
Recently, I had a tremendous setback. I was at my girlfriend’s house sitting on her back porch with her daughter-in-law. I made a funny comment. Her daughter-in-law remarked, “Rich, you’re not funny.” This sent me into a tailspin of anguish and doubt. (Later I learned she was joking. Ha.) Do you mean that in general I’m not funny? Or just that my last joke wasn’t funny? I turned to my girlfriend’s little dog. I looked him straight in the eye.
“What happens,” I said to him, “when a dog gets too warm?”
He didn’t reply.
“He becomes a hot…dog!!!!” The dog began to lick himself. “Get it? A hot dog!!! Hahahahaha!”
That’s funny, right?
I was telling a joke about a dog to a dog!