Balancing Budgets With Humor

Over the past two years, the California Budget Project (CBP) has blogged repeatedly on the difficult choices facing the state as a result of the Great Recession and chronic budget shortfalls. To complement our message of the need for a balanced approach of cuts and revenue solutions, the following blog post will be devoted to the theme of balancing humor and seriousness.

Given the intensity of the current moment, we thought it was a good time to take a “station break” and change the tone for one blog post. We are hopeful that you, our devoted readers and supporters, will come and join us for some laughs, to leaven the seriousness of the current moment. As the British writer and social observer Martin Amis’ commented:

“What we eventually run up against are the forces of humourlessness, and let me assure you that the humourless as a bunch don’t just not know what’s funny, they don’t know what’s serious. They have no common sense, either, and shouldn’t be trusted with anything.”

With April Fool’s Day approaching, we invite you to join us in the common cause of joy, to balance the seriousness of the moment with an hour or two of mirth. The CBP will host a “Very Happy Hour” at Cafeteria 15L on Monday, April 4 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Please come enjoy some laughs with the renowned Yoram Bauman providing seriously funny stand-up comedy-economics. “The World’s First Stand-Up Economist” and the author of The Cartoon Introduction to Economics, Yoram has appeared on PBS and NPR. We know that a comedian economist sounds like an oxymoron, but check Yoram out on YouTube where his videos have received over a million hits. We will have light snacks and a cash bar, and there is an extensive food menu if you decide to stay for dinner. Cafeteria 15L is located at 1116 15th Street, Sacramento. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door and can be purchased here.

As a parting note, we would like to share one last quote from George Santayana: “The aim of life is some way of living, as flexible and gentle as human nature; so that ambition may stoop to kindness, and philosophy to candor and humor.” For those who are not familiar with George Santayana, he is the same philosopher who penned the well-known adage: “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

—  Arianna Van Meurs