One of the most popular and successful types of humor is referring to something taboo by very indirect, almost polite terms. This was noticed by Cicero:
Haec enim ridentur vel sola vel maxime quae notant et designant turpitudinem aliquam non turpiter.
So, a hornpipe is a sailor's song and dance, and doing this under a blanket sounds rather cute and almost polite, and the reader is struck by the comical antithesis between the form and content of the expression -- one respects social graces and the other does not.
- For Teachers