Why do jokes make us laugh? Usually because they take something we expect (in normal life) and make them into something slightly (or very) different. The surprise is the thing that makes it funny.
Oddly enough Freud, who is not a favourite of mine, actually wrote a whole book about the nature of laughter. The only of his work I voluntarily read and enjoyed. In this area of the mental, he was correct. Yaay!!! Go Freud!
I think that was one of the turning points that made me realise I was destined for the world of the more-or-less normal and not to delve into the realms of dysfunctional psyches.
After all, the joke is a universal thing. When the students in class in China interpreted the joke one of them had told, despite imperfect English, I could see exactly why it was funny. One of those universal ‘human condition’ jokes.
So why does thinking about things from a different angle give us pleasure and make us laugh? It’s a form of mental play, that all but the most rigid enjoy.
Playing with possibilities in our minds.
I think I should be off to do some of that now.