Thursday, July 9, 2009

Laugh it Up

“We love to laugh
Loud and long and clear
We love to laugh
So ev'rybody can hear
The more you laugh
The more you fill with glee
And the more the glee
The more we're a merrier we!”

Mary Poppins’ Uncle Albert laughed so much he ended up on the ceiling.  His laughter really brought the house down, or at least it seemed like it. 

When you think about it, what makes us laugh is really complicated.  Everyone’s sense of humor is a little different.  Some people enjoy sophisticated, intellectual, dry humor.  Others like silly, slapstick, goofy humor.  Sometimes your sense of humor may change with your mood. 

I love puns and plays on words.  Check out this one from www.ahajokes.com:

A farmer was milking his cow. He was just starting to get a good rhythm going when a bug flew into the barn and started circling his head. Suddenly, the bug flew into the cow's ear. The farmer didn't think much about it, until the bug squirted out into his bucket. It went in one ear and out the udder.

Okay, that wasn’t side-splitting or anything.  There’s something about the cleverness of a good pun that tickles my funny bone.  Demitri Martin is that kind of funny.  His show combines sketch comedy, word plays, and a sophisticated goofy humor.

He’s one of the few modern comics I enjoy.  So many are based on hurtful stereotypes, are blatantly sexual, or use profanity for every other word.  Whatever happened to the classics:  Bill Cosby, Steve Martin, Robin Williams?  I like commentary comics, too, like Jerry Seinfeld or Bill Engvall.  Our culture is so completely absurd at times, it’s great to laugh at it.

My best memories with friends is when we laugh so hard that our sides and faces hurt, tears spring to our eyes, and we have to cross our legs.  It’s usually not anything in itself that is all that funny, just that one comment leads to another until everything seems funny. 

Laughter is a saving grace.  It has healing properties, both in the human body and soul, and in relationships.  As author Erica Jong writes, “Humor is one of the most serious tools we have for dealing with impossible situations.”

Laugh today.  It truly is the best medicine. 

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