A Happy New Year to you and thanks for reading the first of 24 planned blog posts in 2024.
My job as a user researcher is to identify actionable insights that help product teams make informed decisions. As a result, I am fascinated by the process of generating insights. This involves seeing and connecting the right signals in the data guided by the right questions. Insights transform our understanding of information and illuminate our frames of reference.
Comedians are insightful because they are observant. The mundane human experiences that the rest of us discard as uninteresting are what comedians unpack for insights. They present these insights to us via jokes.
In the ‘Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee’ book; there is a snippet of a conversation between Jerry Seinfeld and Chris Rock.
Jerry: Comedians have wisdom. Great jokes always have wisdom buried in them.
Chris: Right. They require observation. Eighty percent of your job is just paying attention to shit.
Jerry: I know, but it’s deep.
Chris: Most people don’t pay attention. We’re detectives. We’re always on the case.
Chris: Always on the case! That’s all it is.Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee
We can learn a lot from comedians who are good at pushing beyond the ‘What You See Is All There Is’ (WYSIATI) bias to extract insights about human behaviour.
📺 (TV shows)
The Brothers Sun – The fact that Michelle Yeoh is in this show is a good enough reason to watch this limited series. She plays the matriarch of the Sun crime family which is part of the Taiwanese triad. The show focuses on the relationship between her two sons (Charles and Bruce) hence the title. Charles lived a violent gangster life in Taiwan with his father while Bruce who lived a sheltered life in Los Angeles with his mum is unaware of his family’s criminal ties. An assassination attempt on their father results in Charles heading to Los Angeles to protect his family. There is a shadow organisation intent on destroying the triad gangs and the Sun family has to deal with this threat as well as dysfunctional family dynamics. Both brothers grapple with the conflict of suffocating parental expectations and the desire to pursue their passions. Netflix released the enjoyable Beef last year and has started 2024 with The Brothers Sun. Hopefully, there will be more good Asian-American shows released this year.