if i'm in a manzai, i'll definitely be the tsukkomi, yapping and hitting at my boke like crazy. but then, when sometimes i act boke-like, i expect the same sharp retort. to me, a soft response would only be seen as too serious and hurt more than a sharp one.
(non-work-related) case study: you suggested something half-joking, half-plausible. then i slowly said no, and calmly explain why it won't work and reject your suggestion, all with a straight face and no humor. not only does this make the atmosphere heavy and hard to follow through, it also kill any playfulness to the moment.
instead, wouldn't you prefer i say something like "what the heck, man", "that's totally crazy", "you're crazy", etc. and laugh it off with you? it takes the headlight off you, and we all can good-naturedly have a good laugh.
humor is something you either have or don't have. it's fine either way, it's just that i'm sorry you have to miss out on so many wonderful things in this world. you sullen, gloomy, miserable old man.
|boke (left), tsukkomi (right)|
|hetalia comic strip|