Joking About Steve Jobs’ Passing Just Isn’t PC

As I mentioned in my NL last week, the news of Steve Jobs’ passing has affected me more than I thought possible.

I watched several tribute videos and re-watched his Stanford Commencement 2005 speech, parts of which I had seen long ago.

It’s weird because death has been on my mind a lot this year.  Not sure why but I’ve just been thinking about the subject a lot.

I’m not sure when I first became aware of the fact that I will die someday, but I think we all experience different levels of consciousness about it.

I suppose I’ve been digging a bit deeper this year.  So, Jobs’ thoughts on death in that above speech came at a good time.

Probably my favorite conversation on death is, unsurprisingly, from Seinfeld – not embeddable.

We all deal with death differently so, as comedians, our job is to make jokes about everything.  Some lines did come to mind last week but it felt too soon.  That’s the problem, ironically, with this iPhone world in which we live.  We feel the need to lay claim to a joke before someone else does.  The Onion published several articles and Reuters did a piece on where the line is.

The New Yorker put Jobs on its cover, w/ St. Peter checking him in on an iPad.


I suppose prefacing jokes with the fact that I really am sad over the news of Jobs’ death provides the context and creative license to be able to present jokes about it, especially recalling that laughter can be a defense mechanism against the horrible.  For some reason, my brother, Rakesh, and I have a tendency to laugh when we hear bad news.  It’s not that we’re insensitive at all – it’s literally our bodies’ physical defense mechanism.

Here’s what I wrote:

  • If Steve Jobs does get into heaven, as depicted above, it won’t be the first time he passed Gates.
  • The news of the Apple CEO’s passing has shaken me to the core.
  • Jobs has ascended past his iClouds into the real clouds.
  • Jobs resigned from Mac – this is truly apple turnover.
  • This is one Jobs report Obama didn’t need.
  • Steve Jobs, thank you for all you’ve done for our world – you will always be the Mac.
  • I think we should take a moment, re-prioritize, and change the way we talk about our technology now… “My iPhone died.”  It’s not that serious.  People die.  You can recharge a phone.
  • Joking about Jobs’ passing just isn’t PC.
Are any of those over the line?  I don’t think so because I’m not making fun of Jobs’ death but rather our reactions to it.  There are people all along the spectrum – people who joke about everything that day all the way to people who think there are certain things never to be joked about.  There are “buzz words” that just make people uncomfortable, like “Holocaust,” “AIDS,” “Cancer,” etc.  In fact, the NY Times just published an article of people making light of cancer.
But what say you?


4 thoughts on “Joking About Steve Jobs’ Passing Just Isn’t PC

  1. The “passing the gates” one was LEGENDARY. The only one that felt truly forced was the “my iPhone died” one. Good jokes all around!

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