(Sorry for the provocative title.. I couldn't resist
I found this quote in an interview with Alan Kay:
AK: I did quite a bit of study on that over the years to understand the influence of having something that you can read. It’s known that our basic language mechanism for both reading and hearing has a fast and a slow process. The fast process has basically a surface phrasal-size nature, and then there’s a slower one. This is why jokes require pauses; the joke is actually a jump from one context to another, and the slower guy, who is dealing with the real meanings, has to catch up to it.
There have been many, many studies of this. This argues that the surface form of a language, whatever it is, has to be adjustable in some form.
SF: As you probably know, recent research has looked at how different parts of the brain recognize and react to jokes. Physically, they are quite distinct.
AK: Yes. All creativity is an extended form of a joke. Most creativity is a transition from one context into another where things are more surprising. There’s an element of surprise, and especially in science, there is often laughter that goes along with the “Aha.” Art also has this element. Our job is to remind us that there are more contexts than the one that we’re in—the one that we think is reality.
(From this article: http://queue.acm.org/detail.cfm?id=1039523
I like this idea that creativity is really just taking something and putting it in a new context. I've been thinking about the processes of creativity a lot recently, and my original take was a bit different, but I like this one too.