Funny Girl.

No ladies, (and gents?) we are not going to be talking about Barbara Streisand this afternoon, but funny women, and your take on them.

Barbara Streisand Funny Girl

For as long as I can remember, or at least since I have given any thought to the kind of attributes that make a woman attractive, I have wished I was funny. I would really love to be able to be constantly witty, albeit with a bit of an acerbic take on life, because that’s my sense of humour. Β At best I think my humour could be described as ‘dry’, possibly so dry that people don’t get it at all… and therefore I maintain that I am in fact secretly funny.

It’s ironic that I should start by talking about qualities that make women attractive because actually I mean people. I’m not talking sexually attractive, but ‘fun to be around’ kind of attractive and I don’t think I’ll be the only one of the women reading this who thinks that funny men are amongst the most attractive men out there, regardless of physical attributes. As my Mum would say, ‘the ones that make you laugh, make you cry!‘ I’m pretty fussy when it comes to men folk and they’ve got to be a pretty good all around package for me to take an interest (*ahem, that would be before Mr Norris came along of course! πŸ˜‰ ) but give me a funny man who makes me laugh and many other flaws will be forgiven.

But we’re not talking about men here and let’s not get distracted. Historically, ‘funny’ was never a female attribute and certainly not one that found itself amongst the list of attractive attributes. I’m no comedy afficionado ( – maybe I should start watching more comedy and build my personal repertoire?) but the female comedians I can list off the top of my head were typically known for their humour, rather than their looks.

And why is that?

Why do modern intelligent women prefer to be classed as pretty than funny, as beautiful rather than smart? I know I’d be super flattered to be told that I was funny, but would I prefer it to hearing that my hair looks fabulous today? Probably not!

Funny Girl poster

To me there’s nothing better than being funny for all the reasons above and more. Because making people laugh feels good, because I think good humour requires intelligence and it’s a more acceptable take (am I conforming by saying that?) on intelligent when meeting people than, hardcore political chat for example. Because I admire funny people, I have lots of lovely and hilarious friends that I love spending time with, and women who are confident enough to crack funnies and laugh out loud are usually very sexy in their self assurance.

I know my husband thinks it’s hilarious when I make jokes (not always because of the content you understand!) and I’m pretty sure modern men want interactive, intelligent women who can entertain them as much with their banter, as they do in the kitchen/bedroom. πŸ˜‰

So it got me thinking, what do you think about funny as ‘female attribute’? But more importantly what is the quality that you aspire to people thinking of you when they first meet you… Attractive? Intelligent? Well dressed?

Or do you just want to be a Funny Girl? πŸ™‚


PS – How cute is this little girl’s bedroom? – pink but interesting and I love the reminder to be funny πŸ™‚ Found on my Pinterest.

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32 thoughts on “Funny Girl.

  1. I’m all about the funny. I know this because there are people out there that looks-wise wouldn’t even figure on my radar, but as soon as The Funny kicks in I develop all sorts of inappropriate crushes… work crushes, girl crushes, celeb crushes, online persona crushes, even – dare i say it – mini boy crushes!

    Is it wrong that I massively fancy Keith Lemon (I know he’s not real though) because he’s just so funny? I saw him in Canary Wharf and I almost went proper fan-girl on him and had to take some deep breaths!

    If people walk away from a conversation with me and think I’m funny, it would make my day. If people don’t like what I look like, I can confidentally and truthfully say I don’t care – I like the way I look and dress so that’s what counts. If they think I’m stupid, I’d be a bit miffed but whatever, forget them. If I made them laugh, that would make me happy, happy, happy!

  2. I feel in a way that funny women is a more recent phenomenon, what with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler becoming so big (btw Tina Fey’s Bossypants book is hilarious). But I personally love funny women and I wish there was more stuff with them in. I wish they got as much love as funny men.

    And I always secretly hope that when people meet me for the first time they think I’m friendly and a little funny!


  3. I can remember the first time a boy said I was funny, and I can remember the first time a boy said I was pretty (well actually, he was from the Highlands, and said I was a bonny lassie. Swoon). The latter set my heart alight like nothing else, but I was more inclined to believe the former. I think I thought the Highland boy was a bit mental, or just trying to be nice. I love it whenever people tell me something I’ve said or written has made them laugh, but if someone describes me as beautiful (Γ  la Anna K’s lesbian ambush) I tend to blush and dismiss it as flattery and nonsense. I think, to an extent, it has been ingrained in us that it’s somehow better to be pretty than funny. Just look at every rom com ever made – there’s always a hilarious, wise-cracking best friend, but it’s unfailingly the pretty one who gets the happy ending.

    I’ll tell you what though – looks fade, but a sense of humour lasts forever. You know that poem, Marry a Girl Who Reads? Well, marrying a girl who laughs isn’t a bad idea either.

  4. Good post. Here are my thoughts. I don’t particularly think I’m funny & funny was not high up for a partner either. ( I have however married a very funny man & my brother in law is a comedian.) I think in a team my role is to be the calm & relaxed one, I leave the funny up to someone else, & enjoy laughing. So long as someone doesn’t say I’m nice, which I think is lazy say something precise about someone, I don’t mind.
    Oh yes & there should be more female comediennes out there definitely.

  5. I’m wading in on this one…

    I’ve asked H2B what first attracted him to me and he says its because I’m funny and make him laugh! I guess looking back at school i was always the β€˜funny’ one in the group and obviously i always wanted to be the pretty one which i never was!! My family are all jokers – In fact my dad still tries to play an April fools trick on us all every year! (There have been some classic ones in the past!) 15 years ago if you would have asked me if i would rather be pretty or funny I would have said pretty every time but now I’m not so sure!

    I do struggle with making my writing funny though and getting my personality down on the page.

    One persons funny is another person’s annoying or mad though!!

    Rachie xo

  6. Oh I hope I’m funny. I always thought I wasn’t but people have told me otherwise and it made me so happy. I think a lot of women don’t want to be seen as funny, probably for the reasons Kirsty said about the messages we’ve always received about what makes a woman marriageable (I tend to invent words). There are more and more female comedians (I won’t say comediennes as it just looks silly as a word. Unlike marriageable) but so far there aren’t really any I can relate to, which is weird as plenty of my female friends, plus a hella lot of girls on twitter, frequently have me in stitches.

  7. I was asking my husband about this yesterday as I dissected my personality for my ‘about’ page on my new website (such a hard thing to do, btw!). He thinks I’m funny, but because my wit is quite dry, acerbic, and often damnright insulting to others, it tends to only come out when I’m either in company of people I trust 100% or when I’m drunk. I’m a hilarious drunk, apparently, but in day-to-day life I don’t think people see me as being funny. I wish they did, I’d prefer someone to say I was funny to just about anything else they could describe me as. Or maybe “amazingly talented and artistic” but that’s even less likely than funny πŸ˜‰

  8. I too asked my husband what first attracted him to myself he answered with “your tits, smile and wit”. I’ll stick with that.

    I think I am hilarious. Like, beyond funny, people should pay to listen to me be funny. My husband says otherwise.

    I feel a lot more comfortable talking to someone who is themselves rather than trying to crack jokes, I tend to spend more time talking to girls that can make laugh than ones that I think I can get make up tips from.

  9. I like to make people laugh. I love it when people make me laugh. I have a future husband who has such a dry sense of humour people sometimes dont realise he’s joking (which makes me find it even funnier). Comedy, laughter, jokes, wit, humour… theres lots of way to be funny *and have fun.

    We met at Uni, studying a Drama degree with a bunch of writers
    ,actors, dancers, comics and clowns… Laughing is a major part of that, whether its because you fxcked something up or because to get through sometimes very embarassing situations, you have to make each other laugh. So comedy is a huge part of our life and we devour standup, comedies, sit-coms, panel shows etc. But I agree there seems to be a lot less women in comedy than men and I am not really sure why this is as some of the funniest people I know are women. Female comic actress are more common than female standups though.

  10. I second Kirsty – In my school days I can remember being called funny and I can remember a guy saying he obviously wasn’t going out with me for my looks but for my sense of humour! (and I’m not joking when I say he also told me that I looked like someone off tv, and when I excitedly asked who, he told me ‘Robert Downy Jnr’) But now? Put it this way – there’s been a huge outcry over them as a couple, but I’d hands down want to date Catherine Tate rather than Jason Orange. And laughing makes everyone look, and feel better.

  11. I love funny people and most of our friends have a dry sense of humour which I find hilarious!

    As for female comedians we love 30 Rock – Tina Fay is bloody funny and we really enjoy watching Miranda, it never ceases to makes me chuckle. Haven’t seen Bridesmaids yet but I am dying to…


  12. Hmmm I think this is one of those double standards things for me. I find men attractive that others would not consider attractive because of their humour, intellect and also power…

    …however… I do not think these same qualities are as attractive in a woman. I think women have to rely on their looks more than men do to attract a mate.

    There are no female comedians that my husband would say are attractive and the same goes for women in power. He does however rate some of these powerful, intelligent men’s wives… the arm candy if you will.

    I think women are their own worst enemies in many ways. When I think about funny women all I can think of are ones who are famous by being self-deprecating; about their size, their girl problems etc… I am thinking Sarah Millican and the ilk, and it is a shame as the humour I admire is observational, political satire, women I think are perhaps not comfortable enough to be able to do this; it is a tough industry for a woman and perhaps that has left a ‘chip on the shoulder’ or something that they just cannot get over the fact they are female and base all their humour around that fact ignoring the real world and the issues that actually matter. I do expect people will completely disagree, and I secretly hope this leads to me finding the perfect woman comic who is not like what I have described.

    Myself?? I want to be all things, seen as attractive on first sight, then intelligent and then funny/witty as people get to know me.

    Over-all I think the common quality that both men and women find attractive would be confidence; so perhaps the key is to be yourself and love it.

    • I like Sarah Millican and Miranda Hart but I do know what you mean about female stand ups perhaps focusing on self deprication to get laughs. I prefer satrical comedy, but I think women tend to be stronger when they hit this from a character angle (rather than straight stand up) e.g. like Tina Fey as Sarah Palin. I am not sure the reasons why? I

      think you hit the nail on the head about confidence though, that definately shines through.

      I think Kirsty made a good point, I would definately agree that if someone said I was pretty I would be embarrassed (or think they were taking the p!ss) and would lean on the trusted self depricating humour…. Why do women feel the need to do this? (I am sure some men do too, but its not as common I dont think) Perhaps it goes back to what Rebecca talked about before on AOW, that women (& girls) are told ‘dont you look pretty, nice shoes, I like you handbag etc etc’ rather than ‘arent you clever/smart/funny’…but the people I love most in my life (fiancee/friends) make me laugh so much sometimes I nearly pee my knickers… (oh just me???!). Laughter makes people happy, so I think its a great thing to be able to make people laugh, because ultimately, you are making them a little bit happier.

  13. Good evening ladies!

    Apologies for my absence, I’ve been on my first official Florence engagement, viewing jewellery πŸ™‚ More to come on Monday!

    You’ve hit the nail on the head there Clarissa, powerful women is a whole different story (and something I find very aspirational and inspirational) but as for funny women, they do tap into a humour which in general I guess I don’t respect. Kirsty is also right, it’s never the hilarious friend who gets the guy in the films is it?

    I still want to be funny.
    And still maintain that I am. In secret. πŸ˜‰


  14. I love funny girls. It is sexy! Far more sexy than perfect hair, nails, shoes or being skinny. Why do all girls believe having the body of a teenage boy is attractive? It’s just weird! Anyway going off subject a bit… I along with most men I know want a woman to be funny and relaxed. Really our choice of girl is ideally going to be my best friend who I get to have sex with! It’s a bloody good find when you can leave your girl with your mates and go to the bar knowing she will sit and talk and be funny! It’s bloody lovely to be silly, tell silly stories, do stupid voices knowing your girl gets it and even better with come back at you in return! All girls should celebrate their silliness, weirdness and sarcasm. It’s sexy!

  15. I would much rather be told I’m funny than complimented on my handbag! I’ve got through life being the clown, it’s my default setting, so being told I’m entertaining is the ultimate. In fact I always hoped I’d be the funny one in any relationship…. I get very stroppy when my husband gets all the laughs, he’s much quicker than I am. And I tell you what, I don’t laugh lightly but there are a number of ladies who have commented here who make me laugh every day with their musings and blurtings. Long live the funny girls! Always a joy to be around.


  16. Ack it’s taken me forever to get round to commenting. Hello lovely. I love it here.

    I thought this would be the best place for me to start. I’m a funny girl.Well I guess I’d like to think I’m a funny girl. I assume I tried to take on the funny mantle when I realised I was never going to be the hot gal.

    I’m super sarcastic – so much so my normal voice is my sarcastic voice (which causes issues).

    However, I understand the self-deprecating side. In fact I would never direct my hilarious vitriol towards anyone but myself. I know no-one will ever think I’m pretty but at the same point I fear no-one will ever think I’m clever or funny. I know I would take funny or intelligent over pretty, any day. But I would still never believe them and laugh it off.

    Female comedians do themselves no favours with basically the female equivalent of the mother-in-law joke. Although I do rather love Miranda.

    Ack what am I trying to say? I want to be funny because I know it requires intelligence to be funny. The funniest people are extremely intelligent – just look at Boris Johnson.

    Finally I sort of want to be Tina Fey but I’ll take Liz Lemon if that’s the only other option. (Also if Bean doesn’t buy me her book for Christmas, he just doesn’t know me at all. I guess I’ll have to be the modern woman on my own)

    Yikes, sorry for the belated essay. I apparently have more to say on the subject than I realised. Oh and yay for Florence Finds.

    P.P.S. I’m slightly annoyed I’ve not been funny – bother. Next time, maybe.

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