2 Nov 2010
There are things that I think I’m pretty good at – but few things that everyone would agree that I actually am good at. The one ability or trait that everyone seems to agree on is that I am a funny guy. I’m okay with that … I try really hard to be funny. In fact, I actually practice being funny. I have stories that I have told many, many times and what some people might mistake for exaggeration or hyperbole is actually my attempt to hone and refine the story I’m telling. So when I was asked what makes me laugh, I was a little surprise to discover what my answer was -
Very little actually makes me laugh – and the harder someone tries, the less likely I am to laugh. I’m telling you people, you can’t force it, you have to let the game come to you.
The things that make me laugh are generally not okay to laugh at … like someone falling, slipping, or tripping (assuming they don’t actually hurt themselves – pain isn’t funny either). Or when someone gets surprised and scared and they … blaargh!!! These things seem to make me laugh because they are organic and true. When you slip, you can’t be cool – you just can’t. Your arms shoot out and your eyes bug open … most times you even let out a high pitch, totally not cool, but genuine shriek. You can’t control that – same is true when someone jumps out from around the corner and scares you. Those are funny moments.
Think Freud had an opinion about funny people who don’t laugh? Probably, but then again he wasn’t funny either. There have been a few people in my life that make me laugh and most of them don’t tell jokes. They tell stories of woe and accidental humiliation but are able to laugh at themselves and as a result I laugh along with them. Maybe this goes along with being a glass half full type person and always trying to find the positive side to things. I am not a joke teller but I do like a good story – it’s attitude and delivery; it’s knowing which word sounds better, wrinkling a brow and adding a pause at the right moment. When people can laugh at themselves when something goes wrong, it makes it okay to laugh with them. Ever been around someone who was laughing really, really hard and you couldn’t help but laugh with them even though you don’t know what they are laughing about? Or the person who is trying to tell you a story but they are dying laughing while they are trying to tell it? That’s the best.
I love to laugh but I don’t do it too often, so here’s a shout out to the comedians in my life – you know who you are, and I love you for making me laugh.
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