I work at a small company of about 20 people. We have the owner/president, 2-3 managers (depending on how you look at it), and the rest of the people are employees. I'm one of the managers.
Each day we have a meeting to discuss what will happen during the day, but not everyone is there for each meeting, including the owner (my boss). Yesterday, while the owner wasn't there we had the meeting and I joked about him not using some daily tracking software that everyone is supposed to use, including him. It's typical to joke about everyone here. For example, there was an employee that had a few accidents at home and we joked that he needed a bubble suit.
Today, when we had the meeting my boss told me "I heard you have something to tell me from the meeting yesterday." I was confused and asked the room "Does anyone remember what it was?" He then said "I need to use the tracking software more?" I began chuckling because it was a joke, but he raised his voice and said "Do not ever disrespect me in front of the team again. I'm trying to make this company better. If you have a problem, you can talk to me directly." Even though I was in shock I said "Okay, I apologize."
The problem is that I think it's ironic that he thinks I disrespected him in front of everyone, but he did the same thing back to me. This is a small company, but I'm not sure who told him what I said yesterday. I'm not sure if they told him maliciously, meaning to get me in trouble or just as a joke that he took the wrong way.
This was embarrassing. I feel like my team looks down on me now. Would it be better to talk to my boss in private or just look for a new job?
I'd like to add that this tracking software I mentioned isn't very important overall to the business. It's not vital and most people don't use it very often. It's only purpose is so other employees can see where you are such as lunch or on a job site. When the software crashes there is a running joke around the office that goes along the lines of "oh no X software isn't working today, shut everything down!" I wouldn't have made a joke about my boss not using something more important such as an inventory system, especially if I actually had real criticism of him not using it.