Month: December 2010

Are you more aggreeable and extraverted than a comedian?

Probably.. I recently met Louis C.K. backstage before a stand-up performance (documented in this post). One striking observation was his demeanor during the performance was much more appealing than during the interview. Why? A large literature in psychology finds that people are strongly influenced by situational rather than dispositional consideration, and in that regard, he […]

Flash post: How would you sell this rubber chicken?

Kit, co-owner of the Boulder cafe Atlas Purveyors (@atlaspurveyors), is helping me run an experiment. We want to sell this rubber chicken: How would you do it? Tell us: ____ Lower the price (e.g., only $.50) ____ Raise the price (e.g., only $5) ____ Make it scarce (e.g., last one!) ____ Highlight its benefits (e.g., […]

Flash Post: More bad branding for your viewing pleasure.

Although they won’t win this contest, the Big Ten Athletic Conference has created an appallingly bad new logo and coupled it with appallingly bad names for their new divisions. Q: How could they have avoided this debacle? A: Combine art and science by hiring a good designer and market researcher.

Eight minutes with Louis C.K.

Comedian, actor, writer, and producer, Louis C.K, recently performed his stand-up act at the Paramount Theater in Denver, CO. I pulled a few strings and managed to  speak with him before his performance. How Louis C.K. felt about my questions. . In previous posts (here and here) I addressed why understanding humor is important. Despite […]

Guest post by Caleb Warren: Humor Theories – The Big Three

Some pretty bright folks have asked the question, what makes things funny? Despite efforts from the likes of Aristotle, Kant, and Freud, there’s been little agreement on the answer. There are hundreds if not thousands of different humor theories, many of which fall into one of three broad categories: superiority theories, relief theories, and incongruity […]