Laughter in Crisis

I envy people who can stare down a crisis and stab it in the heart with a one-liner. My oldest son is a person like that. Usually his one-liners are quotes from a movie given in the actor’s voice. He can do a fantastic Shaggy and Scooby routine. The most quoted line in our family is the Sean Connery’s “Some things in here don’t react well to bullets,” from Hunt for Red October. My daughter has an amazing sense of humor. I’ve often told her she should be a stand up comic.

Now me, I’m often accused of taking life too seriously. I agree. I’ve tried to change, but my sense of humor is so dry it rivals Death Valley. I actually like the smell of a skunk. What does that say about my personality?

I’d like to plant a right hook to the jaw of the person who coined the phrase “life isn’t all fun and games.” And a left hook to whoever said “Don’t be funny.” I heard them all too often as a child. They’ve been self-fulfilling prophecies. Besides, when you’re pulling a knife out of your back—hey there, nice Bowie knife—where’s the humor in that?

Laughter reduces the levels of stress hormones and increases the happy hormones. It also helps one gain a better perspective of a negative situation. A humor writer I’m not, but I look for something to laugh about during a crisis, because if I don’t, more than my sense of humor ends up in Death Valley.

There are two good things about things about the endless stream of forwarded emails I get: 1) It tells me people are thinking about me. That’s comforting. 2) They often provide a good belly laugh.

Are you getting enough laughter?

Debra L. Butterfield © 2010

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