Merriam-Webster defines silly as “exhibiting or indicative of a lack of common sense or sound judgment,” which basically implies that silly is stupid. Silliness may come from an illogical place, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be smart. Case in point: Todd Glass’ stand-up at the DC Improv last weekend.
Glass’ early set Friday was, at times, over-the-top silly, like when he’d repeatedly end a punch line with: “And we’ll be right back. You’re watching the Todd Glass show at the DC Improv,” while a radio station jingle played over the loudspeaker.
Or when he did a bit about an older man who sees an infomercial for a “Hip Mop” at 3 a.m., turns to his wife and shouts, “I need to have that mop!” After starting the joke, Glass pulled back, ending it early because, he admitted, it may have been too ridiculous.
Sensing that maybe he’d misjudged his crowd, he restarted the bit a little later — re-enacting the scenario as it escalated to the point where he was screaming as if the world would end if this man did not get his mop. The crowd erupted in laughter.
It may sound silly on paper, but in person, it seemed pretty smart.