It's ever more tempting to put on the (metaphorical) clown suit.
It allows you to provoke with impunity.
Clowns enjoy a different relationship with the laws of physics.
You can spray someone in the face with a seltzer bottle, hit them with a pie or tweak them, and then laugh about it.
No one is allowed to comment on the size of your shoes or how many people you're packing in that car or the weak link between you and reality.
Crowds gather and no one takes the implications of what you say seriously, but they cheer. Tricksters change our culture. Noisy voices get more followers in social media…
The challenge, as PT Barnum, Don Rickles and the National Enquirer have found, is that while the suit is easy to put on, it's almost impossible to take it off. After a while, people start to notice that you're not actually keeping your promises.
[and regular readers might enjoy this response post, from 11 years ago]