Absurdist Funny

Absurdist humor is a fish that keeps on skiing.

Absurdist humor is an overconfident fax machine.

For these reasons, absurdism and surrealism are my favorite vehicles for comedy; the surprise element inherent in these forms always gets my blood going.

Absurdism is also a perfect vehicle for hybrid flash and poetry–with an absurdist bent, you can make leaps in terms of character, setting, and tone without the restraint of realism.

In Leonora Desar’s hilarious, Some Meaning-, the titular “Meaning” is an actual physical object that can be banded around from person to person–perfect fodder for surrealism. Throughout this piece, abstract concepts take on physicality, ramping up the comedic effect while diving deep into the weightier themes of infidelity and indecision:

“Searching in his ear, or in his cheekbone. In the long curve of his cock. I’d whisper to it, Are you Meaningful, and it said, Yes. Yes. I looked for it in his smell, dandelions mixed with orchids that he borrowed from his wife. Maybe she was the Meaningful one. I called her up and asked, Maybe you can give me Meaning? Sorry, she said, I cannot, and can you stop fucking my husband?” – Leonora Desar, Some Meaning-, Cincinnati Review

💡Absurdist PROMPT💡

Use this Random Noun Generator to create a list of 5 nouns. Select one or more of the nouns to use in your story. Dive into absurdism by personifying one of the nouns (e.g. “camera” becomes a person/entity) or making an abstract noun concrete (e.g. “anxiety” becomes a physical object). Lean into the absurdism and take bold leaps!