Monday, October 5, 2015

Delta Man: Gamma Humor

Vox asked me to write a follow up post about humor given the response to my previous post. I’m convinced that one of the reasons if not the main reason that Gammas constantly engage in snark, bad jokes, and cut-ups is for express reason of plausibly deniability of being wrong about something. The secondary reason is to indirectly take on men of higher ranks with as little chance of recourse as possible. 

Snide remarks – Gammas don’t make them towards attractive women ever and rarely against unattractive women. Why? Because it’s pure Game of trying to tear down men of other higher rank in their own manner. The Beta gives his instructions about something important (and of course the Gamma should really be in charge) and suddenly there’s a mumbled movie quote which is a shot at the Beta. If the Gamma is called on it he quickly replies, “Relax, I’m just joking.” If pressed. “No really.” (Panic starts to set in.) “I’m totally joking.”

Movie quotes – The Gamma has nothing really funny to say so he parrots something else which he found funny. He is so socially clueless he doesn’t think that perhaps other people in the world won’t find his humor so humorous. *squawk* “Come and see the violence inherent in the system.” *squawk* “He’s dead Jim. *squawk* “I’ll be back”. Once again if someone tells him to put a sock in it, “Relax, I’m just joking.”

It only spirals downward from there if a Gamma is given authority as they don’t know how to use it or when to use it. You’ll find a frustrating and weird use of humor about serious things from a Gamma boss, and when people as for clarification he’ll come back to “You’ll know when I’m serious.” Think about that for just a moment. It means an employee has to guess when a boss is serious about things. Who wants to work under those conditions? It is horrendous for moral and efficiency. This isn’t to say if you are a manager you can’t have a couple of employees which you can crack inside jokes with, but you can’t be flippant, or joke about anything of importance. This isn’t negotiable. You’ll have employees who loath you which is exactly why the Gamma does it in the first place, he wants people to like him.

It really comes back to the deep insecurity of the Gamma. Being “funny” all of the time gives him a way out, at least in his mind, of difficult situations. If you are insistent on trying to be “funny” all of the time you need to look good and hard at your motivations. Before you roll that movie quote off your tongue, before you make a snide remark about something catch yourself and ask, “Why?” Is this legitimately funny and appropriate, or am I doing it out of habit and fear of not being liked or wrong?

I have to include a paragraph about proper humor as I can hear the howls of protests from the Gammas. “You just want a boring, starched collar world of nothing!” No. Absolutely not. There are very few things better than hanging out with friends and family and having a good belly laugh about things. But if you think movie quotes, snide remarks, funny voices, and constant small jokes are equivalent you are clueless.

26 comments:

William Hughes said...

Consistency leads to trust. It is a relentless pressure to be consistent and just.

SJWs (thank you for the syntax) must be removed. Anyone who is pulling the sledge in the wrong direction is a hazard to the team and must go.

I used to call it firing the loser but had a hard time articulating why.

Hammerli280 said...

I'll toss in some observations about humor, make what you will of them:

1. Humor is like spice, a little goes further than you think.
2. The orthodox way to work humor into a presentation is to start with a joke. Don't. Work a one-liner or two into your presentation.
3. Be innovative with your humor.
4. The only person you can freely poke fun at is yourself.
5. Never make jokes at the expense of a subordinate. He's under discipline and can't respond except with, "Yes, sir."

Mastermind said...

"4. The only person you can freely poke fun at is yourself."

You should almost never poke fun at yourself. It's a bad habit (like looking down when you walk) and erasing it from your behavior will visibly improve your status and interaction with others (especially girls).

Student in Blue said...

Snide remarks – Gammas don’t make them towards attractive women ever and rarely against unattractive women.

Just a clarification... Gammas don't make snide remarks towards them *in person*. There's a very interesting whiplash between hearing snide joking about a popular, really pretty person and when that pretty person shows up in person. Complete 180 in behavior and if they're confronted, well... they were "just joking about it", man.

There are very few things better than hanging out with friends and family and having a good belly laugh about things. But if you think movie quotes, snide remarks, funny voices, and constant small jokes are equivalent you are clueless.

Really, it's not about the type of humor, but how it's presented. If a joke is not funny... a Gamma will just wiggle out of telling a joke that went over poorly, and people notice that whether subconsciously or consciously. It's frustrating to all who's not a Gamma to deal with a dishonest person... and even then Gammas only can swallow it when the liar believes the same things as the Gamma.

>liar, Gamma
But I repeat myself.

rcocean said...

This reminds me of a picture that Scalzi proudly posted of himself in High School. There were people up in front singing Christmas Carols and there was Scalzi obviously making some snarky, eye-roll comment to a fat chick in the back of the class. The essence of Gama. As for making snide comments at work. When I started my job I'd often make derogatory - but funny - comments about my asshole boss. Why? Because he was a real asshole. Imagine my shock when someone told me that I should stop being so "jealous" of him. My first reaction, was "wow, this powerful figure is being an asshole to ALL of us and making ALL our jobs miserable, but *I'm* just Jealous" but then I realized that most people don't think that way. So I stopped it.

rcocean said...

BTW, after working for over 20 years in an office environment, I'd recommend everyone young guy to leave the humor at the office door. First, most people are stupid and have no sense of humor. Second, there are assholes just waiting to "Misunderstand" your jokes and cause you problems. Third, you may say something in a joking manner that offend someone.

Ruby AOre said...

Argue that there's a psychological addiction to you the pleasure the excitement that goes along with it in I don't know I don't even I wouldn’t say that there's an addiction to it I would say Vigoraflo yet exciting in a ser who doesn’t want to repeat exciting experiences it some Francisco's famed is the home of one of America's most vibrant gay.

http://www.garciniacambogiaprofacts.com/vigoraflo/

Desiderius said...

"he wants people to like him"

This.

One of those things that are lost when chased.

SciVo said...

Having been gamma, I can confirm that it comes from insecurity. Making people laugh is a form of power. That's pretty much how all comics start out; just some are better than others.

There are very few things better than hanging out with friends and family and having a good belly laugh about things. But if you think movie quotes, snide remarks, funny voices, and constant small jokes are equivalent you are clueless.

That is so true.

You should almost never poke fun at yourself. It's a bad habit (like looking down when you walk) and erasing it from your behavior will visibly improve your status and interaction with others (especially girls).

This is also true.

JeanDark009 said...

I said it on a previous post and I'll say it again:

Please keep posting insights about Gammas. So damn enlightening and helpful. Never fails to make my day.

Trust said...

In my low value days, I said "just kidding" nonstop. I'd say something insulting and then play it as a joke, when the reality was I was a bitter coward who couldn't resist snark but wanted to defuse consequences.

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

Zero tolerance policy towards snark and snide remarks.

Cameron said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cameron said...

"Gamma" seems like a synonym for "depression." The similarities between the behaviors described in these posts and the symptoms of depression are striking.

Sokrates said...

We shall not always take life too serious - you could get mad about what you have to face.

Great post - as ever.

from http://freedompowerandwealth.com

Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus said...

It's far better to be witty and a propos than to be "funny." Gammas typically can't tell the difference.

maniacprovost said...

As a hilarious person I sometimes have to reign myself in. If you're not a gamma, probably the worst motivation for inserting a joke into a conversation is boredom. It can lead you to be either not funny or an asshat, or both.

Daniel said...

Gamma is a tough person to get along with in humorous situations. Where the Omega, Delta, Beta and Alpha will all laugh because something is funny or everyone is in a generally mirthful mood, the Gamma laughs because there is laughter, and he doesn't want to be seen as not "getting it."

Johnny Con's a good example of this on twitter. He'll get into long, unfunny "call and response" conversations with high value targets as a sort of mini-performance, and repost his "best" threads on his blog, usually in the name of "poking fun at himself" but the problem is the subject matter - Johnny Con himself - just isn't the comedy gold mine he wants it to be.

He did an absolutely dreary riff on Highlander with Chris Kluwe and thought so well of it that he re-posted and then highlighted it in his "best of" twitter performance post.

If comedians represented the SS hierarchy:

Alpha - Louis C.K.
Beta - Ron White
Delta - Jim Breuer/Brian Regan
Omega - Zach Galifianakis

Gamma - Woody Allen

rumpole5 said...

All this Gamma discussion is reinforcing my basic misanthropic, curmudgeonly tendencies! I already think that most people are more trouble than they're worth, and you have to remind me of the inner workings of these persons?! I'll be in the library until further notice.

droid4apk.org said...

It's far better to be witty and a propos than to be "funny." Gammas typically can't tell the difference.
Droid4apk

Eric said...

I’m convinced that one of the reasons if not the main reason that Gammas constantly engage in snark, bad jokes, and cut-ups is for express reason of plausibly deniability of being wrong about something.

I've always believed these are people who have mistaken cynicism for sophistication.

Ron said...

@Daniel

Don't know about the rest of the list, but I'd put Joe Rogan in the alpha spot

rogan putting a woman in her place

SciVo said...

@Daniel,

I think the omega spot is an interesting question. Zach Galifianakis is self-deprecating, but he got the Leader of the Free World on his show and interjected "Is this what they mean by drones?" in Obama's plug for the Affordable Care Act. I doubt an omega would even attempt that, much less pull it off, and then there's his wife.

A better example of an omega comic (at least in his stand-up persona) would be Bobcat Goldthwait, and even he was married twice, so you could make an argument for gamma in real life. I suspect that to find a true omega comic, we'd have to go down the list to the guys we've never heard of.

Daniel said...

I don't mean they are that in real life: just that their comedy finds humor at a certain SS level. Galifianakis' comedy is played as if it were thought of in a bug-infested crawlspace. And yes, Joe Rogan's act is definitely on an alpha setting.

Dystopic said...

If you make a genuine mistake, acknowledge and correct it promptly, and do not get emotional about it (or restrain it if you do). For a Gamma looking to escape, this is essential. It will go against the grain the first few times, but eventually it will become second nature, and making a mistake will no longer seem particularly damaging.

On the other hand, if you have not made a mistake, never, ever apologize or self-deprecate. People will soon observe that when you are wrong, you acknowledge it quickly. This will make them more likely to trust you and wish to associate with you, raising your rank accordingly.

The Gamma is paranoid that acknowledging a mistake will make him look weak, but it is his terror of appearing weak that gives him away as a fool and a liar.

Roz apk said...

It's far better to be witty and a propos than to be "funny." Gammas typically can't tell the difference. Rozapk
Rozapk

Post a Comment

NO ANONYMOUS COMMENTS.