Via Boing Boing, The Wilhem Scream has appeared in a vast number of movies and soundtracks. This is a specific set of screams recorded, apparently, for the 1951 movie “Distant Drums” and has been used by and familir to sound designers in the industry.
This reminds me of the way dumb jokes work. Once or twice a dumb joke is funny, but then it gets old really fast. But, if one keeps with it, after a while, it gets funny again and then just keeps getting funnier … to some point of saturation. So, the lesson here is to “stay the course” but not indefinitely. Eventually, the joke becomes and inside joke if people stick with it long enough.
I also, for myself, like continuity. I tend to come up with something I think is funny and weave it back into conversations. This is especially effective as a way to bracket topics. For example, some ice breaker returns and becomes a marker that a topic has run its course. Or, as a milestone that marks points where the conversation has slowed down.
I think this style is something I learned to use through participation in dial-up bulletin board systems in the 90’s. The non-threaded conversations on systems using Citadel-style BBS software were especially strong in creating this opportunity. What would happen is that syncopated conversations would happen as people came in and out of the flow and topics would weave in and out of each other. The ability to come in to a conversation and bring up a topic that got left behind, especially if it was funny, created a very rich and textured experience both as a reader and a participant.
Anyhow, someone should give, even if posthumous, the actor that recorded the Wilhelm Scream a Hollywood star.