Rumours have been circulating in recent days of a male, aged 18 to 22, who awkwardly repeated a joke his friends didn’t laugh at.
At the centre of the gossip is Seán McCarthy, 20, who is believed to be the student in question. When approached for a statement, Seán denied any involvement in the practice, which is generally regarded as ‘really awkward’. A friend of Mr. McCarthy, who prefers to remain anonymous, agreed to speak to reporters in the Boole Basement early this week.
“He made a joke that wasn’t funny, and none of us laughed. We didn’t want to seem mean, so we just pretended not to hear it,” they claim, “but Seán decided to repeat the joke. And we still didn’t laugh, except one guy, who felt bad for him. It was soul-destroying.”
Sources close to the alleged offender – a third-year UCC student – have described his actions as “unforgivable”.
“I lost three minutes of my life that day, and I’m never going to get them back,” one remarks. “And it was all because of Seán and his awkward joke.”
The uncomfortable retelling of bad jokes is not a recent phenomenon; historians believe the practice stretches at least as far back as the sixteenth century, when Kathryn Howard claimed her husband, King Henry VIII, was a ‘pain in the neck’ at least three times in 1542 – a joke which, even at the time, was considered dated. Mr. McCarthy has since become a social pariah, for reasons our anonymous source explains:
“We’re all just living from one day to the next. It’s gotten so bad that every time he says something that’s even remotely funny, we scream at him like hyenas. My abdomen can’t survive under this kind of duress for much longer.”
At the time of writing, Seán continues to deny that he repeated the joke, claiming instead that his social circle misheard the comment. His close friends have released a statement urging him to own up to the transgression, as “the awkwardness is tearing [them] apart”.
Mr. McCarthy has declined to respond.