But what might we find ourselves doing if not getting it was the project, not the problem?
Phillips's question here posits that perhaps there are some cognitive activities where the goal is to stay with ambiguity, uncertainty, or a lack of finality. The project or undertaking of such activities is not getting it, i.e., remaining in a state that lacks rational certainty. Such an approach would be:
Not, of course, promising with jokes, which seems to persuade us that there is an 'it' to get, but more promising with works of art.
With jokes, not getting it would be non-ideal. A joke has a point that we need to understand. Otherwise the joke has failed: either the listener feels stupid for not getting the joke, or the teller feels stupid for the joke's not landing. Even explaining the joke so that the listener "gets it" typically makes the joke not funny at all. So this approach of remaining in a state of non-finality would not be promising if the project is a joke.
However, works of art are the sort of project where not being certain about what's going on, and therefore enjoying the ambiguity as enriching the work of art, is precisely the point. If a question like "but what does this poem mean?" can be answered straightforwardly with a right and complete answer, it's probably not a very good poem. If what the poem means always eludes our grasp, such that the poem is evocative but does not definitively resolve to a single meaning, it's a more promising poem.
This is also true for creating works of art, not just for interpreting them. Good artists express themselves in such a way that even they cannot fully explain the "meaning" of their artwork. Alternatively, an artwork created with a single, specific message in mind that the audience is supposed to readily understand is more propaganda than art.