This is the kind of simple question I'm often too embarrassed to ask, because I should probably know this by now. But here goes...
I was ordering something at a cafe, and I noticed some slightly awkward English on the menu something that made me laugh. It wasn't super funny or anything, it just caught me a little off guard. The cashier noticed me laugh and looked puzzled. So I pointed at the text and said:
This happens all the time where I speak off the cuff, and then after the moment has passed, I realize I almost certainly said it wrong. Unfortunately, unlike other cultures, in Japan people rarely call you out. The cashier didn't look at me like "what the hell did you just say?", she just smiled. Leaving me unsure if I basically spoke complete nonsense and she was being nice, or that maybe I was close enough and she couldn't be bothered to offer any adjustments.
Passive and causative verb forms and the right particles to go with them have always been a source of trouble for me.
I think I should have said:
I am the thing being made to laugh, so it's acting on me, so I take the particle
を. However, I want to make the thing I'm pointing at the focus of my sentence, not me. So, maybe I should have said:
In a sense, I was made to laugh by this thing I'm pointing at. It's a shortened form of:
I often turn out to be totally wrong, so, am I wrong again? What would be the best way for me to express, while pointing at the text on the menu, "this made me laugh"?
Also see this question and answer about the causative and passive forms of 笑 for related information. A joke is an interesting edge case, because, as explained in answers below, a thing has no animacy, so it doesn't "make" people laugh, but a joke is the result of actions between people, so in a sense, the joke us a proxy that can be said to "make" people laugh.