President Trump is still in the hospital for Covid-19. Doctors say the good news is the virus isn’t making any progress because Trump’s immune system keeps interrupting it.
How I wrote it:
I wanted to write a joke about Trump contracting Covid-19 because it was a huge news story. But, as always, I also wanted to write a joke that could be enjoyed by as many people as possible. That’s a tricky task, because Trump is so polarizing.
So when I used my Punch Line Maker #1–Link two associations of the topic–I only considered associations that I thought most people would have, not just Trump haters and not just Trump supporters.
That meant when I came up with associations of the topic handle “Trump,” I rejected associations like “he deserves to be infected,” because plenty of people might disagree with that.
Instead, I went with an association that I thought everyone would be willing to accept, that in the first Presidential Debate, Trump had interrupted Biden constantly.
Associations of the other topic handle, “Covid-19,” include “immune system fights virus.” So I was able to create a punch line by substituting the idea of interrupting for the idea of fighting.
Because the news about Trump’s condition was so fast-moving at the time I wrote the joke, I crafted a topic that describes his status in general terms, so the joke would have a little longer shelf life.
I worded the angle as “the virus isn’t making any progress” so it would suggest something that someone in a debate might do. A wording like “the virus is being neutralized” wouldn’t have guided the audience from the topic to the punch line quite as smoothly.