Re: Leadership Can Be Taught? LO2134

Jim Michmerhuizen (
Mon, 17 Jul 1995 09:47:09 +0059 (EDT)

Replying to LO2127 --

On Sun, 16 Jul 1995, Andrew Moreno wrote:

[ ...snipsnip... ]
> you about them. I think that one, and this is only one, of the
> most important tools in this toolset is a sense of humor. An
> ability to laugh. When you laugh, you have the opportunity to
> escape your world. People sometimes say, "In a few years, we'll
> laugh about this." Why wait?
> Instead of, "Let's seriously study this situation," [and
> possibly narrow our focus at the same time.] We could ask, "How
> much fun could we have doing this?", "How much more can we have
> to chuckle about?" and ask ourselves, "Isn't most of this
> silly when you REALLY look at it?"

Oh yes I do like that. You know until you mentioned it I didn't even
realize how often I do that. This observation of yours ties together
a surprising range of things, Andrew, from Aristotle's definition of
comedy to that little side-thread of a week or so ago on the "Feast of
Fools". Let me articulate some of this if I can:

a) there's a critical common logical component to all those four stages
or levels of learning you mentioned: each one "objectifies" the one
below it. Each one works by seeing entire patterns in the one below, and
taking control of them.

b) humor and wit do that too, as Aristotle pointed out and Robin Williams

c) so, clearly, a way to get people to climb up one full learning level is
to make jokes about what they're doing right now at the level they're
currently on. Sometimes, the spontaneous occurrence of group humor is a
signal that a learning shift is about to take place.

d) I -- and I'll bet a _lot_ of other people too -- sometimes do this
almost without thinking: make a joke, and before the laughter has even
died down, say something like "well, actually, as funny as that sounds,
we can probably learn something from this...".

Thanks for your sharp observations.

     Jim Michmerhuizen
     web residence at
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