I can’t seem to remember how many times in my life, my mom has thrown the same old line at me, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all” Looking back, I feel that if at all I was capable of doing that, I would have definitely avoided a lot of trouble, but then, I would have missed having a lot of fun too!! So here I am, a well educated grown man, totally in my senses, at the cost of going against the current, proclaiming that sarcasm is too underrated in the society.
In my opinion sarcasm should be considered an art form because it takes a really witty person to unleash sarcasm in its true sense. Sarcastic people are often on the receiving end of allegations like they are sadists and they relish demeaning other people. Due to the widely held bias against sarcasm the masses tend to ignore the fact that it takes a lot of courage to say things to people in their face instead of behind their back. This quality, which is the essence of sarcasm should be appreciated rather than looked down upon.
There is an inherent social cleansing feature in sarcasm, in the sense that it breaks the aura of greatness that some people like to carry around themselves and levels things up between people. Sarcasm is healthy if the giver doesn’t mind becoming the taker every once in a while, otherwise it just amounts to bullying. Just like the test of fire makes fine steel, being on the receiving end of sarcasm helps in having a tough exterior and boosting our self-confidence. By far the most beneficial aspect of sarcasm is that when used with good timing, nothing gets one more popular with the opposite sex. I would even go to the extent of saying that sarcasm is the mother of flirting.
We live in a world where people are increasingly communicating via meta-messages (i.e saying something and implying something else). In such a situation decoding of those messages also becomes equally important as communication is never complete unless the receiver has decoded the message sent. Recently a software tool designed and developed at Hebrew University of Jerusalem to spot sarcastic sentences in product reviews was voted one among the ‘50 best inventions of 2010’. This might come as a surprise, but understanding sarcasm also demands and develops a certain amount of grey matter. All being said, sarcasm is more like a necessary evil in our society than merely a pursuit of wicked personalities.
We must appreciate this art and not let it die…After all “A li’l bit of banter ain’t gonna hurt nobody”