Humor is my defense mechanism in most situations. It’s my medicine/cure for anything depressing, sad, or needlessly tragic. If you can laugh at it, it loses most of its power to cause pain. J.K. Rowling explored this theory briefly in the third Harry Potter book, Prisoner of Azkaban. I wasn’t really surprised because everyone knows humor has its own special sort of magic. My mother knows this better than anyone.
My mother is rockin’ the high side of her 70’s and she is the kindest, most caring person I know. She will give away her last dollar if you asked her and when something good happens to you…she is genuinely as happy as if it were her victory. However, if you happen to trip, slip, stumble, or even stub your toe in front of this woman, she will dissolve in uncontrollable laughter. I call it her evil side. No one can be that good all the time. She is always slightly ashamed afterwards, and appropriately sympathetic to your pain, but that doesn’t stop her next time you happen to fall in her presence.
One of my first memories is slipping in the snow at the bus stop and hearing her peals of laughter as she watched from our front porch. I watched through tear filled eyes as she bent double with her malicious mirth…
I have reminded her of this incident more than once as an adult and each time she has apologized profusely…then collapsed at the memory of my chubby eight year self slipping in the snow, bundled up like Ralphie’s little brother in A Christmas Story.
I don’t believe there are many situations I DON’T find funny, although some are definitely more so than others. But if I had to choose I would say standup comedy may be my favorite. Because a funny comedian can take an everyday occurrence and make you see it in a completely different and hilarious way…just by using the right words.
What makes you laugh? And if you have to think about it…are you laughing enough?