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Use the Rule-of-Three To Develop Humor

The Humor Rule-of-Three follows the formula:

  1. Set-up + Set-up + Twist.
  2. Equal weight + equal weight + unequal weight
  3. Equal weight + equal weight + absurd or crazy item

Before we go further let me explain “equal weight” – they could be:

  • Similar physical size: 1. town-house, 2. trailer
  • Similar category: 1. car, 2. motorbike
  • Similar attributes: 1. tall, 2. muscular
  • Others…

Once you identify the first two the audiences brains…striving to be smart…immediately start looking for a #3 of equal weight…but you derail the thought process with an unequal weight, twist, or crazy item. An example of this would be: The Swiss are a combination of 1. Austrians (equal weight), 2. Germans (equal weight), and 3. nuns (unequal weight or absurd/crazy)! Lets see this in action:

This formula gets laughter by fooling the brain. The first two “Set-ups” are rational and logical. The brain, which loves to problem solve and always thinks ahead, automatically tries to come up with the third item before it’s said. When the “Twist” goes off in another direction, audiences respond with laughter!

This is a series of blog articles and brief videos on “Finding the Funny – Learn the Step-By-Step-Process to Develop and Deliver Humor & Funny Stories & Incorporate into Serious Content.” The blogs are excerpts from my e-learning course (see link on right) which includes:

  • Over 16 lessons
  • Over 8 hours of video instruction
  • Activities and quizzes to complement each lesson
  • Downloadable worksheets and templates
  • 12 month access to course updates and additions

Please feel free to share with professional speakers, public speakers, trainers…anyone who stands in front of audiences who wants to make them laugh or bring some lightheartedness into serious content. Help me out by “liking,” “subscribing.” and “sharing” on the various social media platforms. To help me out, please make sure you “subscribe” (right-hand column) so you do not miss any of these weekly blog articles. Please feel free to comment on this blog-site and on social-media sites, and share with those who will benefit from them.

Copyright © MMXX by David R. Hill