When I first started this writing gig, I believed I had found a gap in the market. A lack of genuine humour, light-heartedness and a comedic take on serious issues ... that didn't rely on pushing a particular political agenda.

Every week I would sign off with the tagline, "smile loudly"... my descriptor of laughing.
That was many moons ago and thanks to the unprecedented rise of political correctness, those humorous articles have become increasingly more difficult to write.

If you want to enjoy a laugh, maybe even one that comes at the expense of someone else, it appears you literally need to store your loud smile in the great abyss, commonly known as the cloud, only to download it later and enjoy it in the privacy of your own bedroom.

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If you do it publicly, there is the very real fear that you will upset some uptight, over-sensitive, socially influenced Bozzo who tries to deny that their orchestrated outcries of bigotry and intolerance haven't earned them special treatment or believes that, like the Great Wall of China, Kim Kardashian's arse is visible from outer space.

Such is the intelligence of the average PCer and misunderstood millennial.

Seriously, if you want a good joke, look no further, both of the above have it spades.

What does it tell us about the world we live in when columnists like me become afraid to put pen to paper because society now deems almost everything as insensitive, inappropriate or racist.

Our most iconic Kiwi comedian, Billy T, must be turning in his grave.

If his shows were to air today KillBill would become a hashtag within seconds. A global movement would be hastily formed in the bowels of social media, manufacturing a turd of Titanic proportions, that will then be used to squash the spirit of those just wanting to enjoy a good laugh.

What the bloody hell has happened to us? Those once relaxed, kicked-back Kiwis that were only too happy to laugh at themselves when someone else would take the p*ss.
Nowadays, absolutely everything is seen as offensive to one group or another, some more than others, I might add.

It would appear that it's, now, only positive to find the negative and bang on and on about it, relentlessly, and we wonder why youth suicide and mental illness is consistently on the rise.

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Well duh, we live in a world where we are virtually trained to believe that we have no option but to be constantly depressed about all the perceived oppression and social injustices occurring around us.

We're raising generations to have a chip on their shoulders, but unfortunately not the kind that requires tomato sauce or onion dip.

Ironically, it's no laughing matter.

Despite the fact that humour is subjective, and even though, most health experts agree that laughter really is the best medicine, we continue to find ways to deny ourselves the benefits of a good laugh, in favour of the need to "fit in".

A fact, that if it wasn't so sad, it would almost be laughable.

And so there we have it. The reason I don't even try to be funny anymore.

Not even a 3D printer could manufacture enough funny bones to fix the problem.

Look up the word miserable in your dictionary ... I wouldn't be surprised if the term human beings had been recently added as a definition.

We're taking ourselves far too seriously. We need to lighten up and let the laughter back in before smiling loudly becomes a crime.

#itsnojoke.

Your stony-faced feedback is welcome: investik8@hotmail.com