Suggested Audio Candy:
 Prefab Sprout The King of Rock ‘n Roll
 The Mavericks “Dance The Night Away”
I love to laugh. Of all my pastimes, none please me as greatly as my ability to make others chuckle. Life can be supremely unfunny at times and smiles can be replaced with grimaces, but a little well-placed comedy has the ability to lift the gloom, if only momentarily. I like my eyebrows, though they appear to be growing wilder with everyday that passes, and prefer not to use them for frowning. They are rather good at showcasing surprise, excitement gives them a nudge in the right direction, and they’re also wonderful in deadpan situations. The unsung heroes of the face possess many talents and, should you be fortunate enough that they meet in the middle, then there is no more delightful facial hair. Sure, a mustache can be amusing, particularly when accompanied by a pair of lamb chops, but ultimately it just doesn’t have the authority of a pair of bushy growlers. In addition, they’re unisex, whereas sporting a goatee is troublesome for the fairer sex unless they’re over fifty or travelling with the circus.
My eyebrows have names. On the left we have Gene Fairbanks and, sitting to his right, is Dr. Augustus Leonard Gill III. For the most part, they work well in unison, and I try to ensure that they both get a daily run-out, just to keep them trim. Comedy works best and assists me in feeling less blue, thus I’m always on the lookout for decent pratfall. If this is at my expense then all the better; should I suffer one of my numerous clusterfuck moments then I consider that a freebie. The reason for this is simple; I prefer my comedy as black as it comes and that ordinarily leaves someone with egg on their face so why not make that person me? Not everyone has a sense of humor, particularly when they provide the butt of said joke, but I know full well I can take it. Nobody takes exception to the gag and, therefore, everyone comes out victorious. I could face plant in front of a crowd of heckling onlookers and my natural reaction would be to milk that moment for all it is worth.
There are many things in everyday life which offer comedy value. The news isn’t one of them; that’s just one long festival of human misery and distressing financial statistics, with the story of Julius, the windsurfing shrew, tacked onto the end just to encourage you to tune into the next broadcast. Daytime TV is also no joke or, if it is, it’s largely lost on me. Indeed, there is little fun to be gleaned from televisual activities unless Judge Judy makes your pickle trickle. Personally, I prefered her in The Golden Girls. It is advisable to search for your fits and grins elsewhere and that means rubbing shoulders with members of the general public. At least once in every calendar day, I make it my mission to pay the local grocery store a visit, in the hope that I will be gifted a giggle.
Purchasing one’s daily provisions is no laughing matter; especially when the government constantly raise the price of a box of smokes and have the bare-faced cheek to remove one from every packet in an attempt to stymie the consumer. They bank on the fact that we refuse to request “nineteen Marlboro Lights” and our shameful attention spans to complete their skullduggery. Every now and then, when I strip away the foil, I remember their treachery and snort my derision. Thankfully, the old lady behind me in the queue clad in a lilac cardigan and riddled head to toe in fur balls is on hand to return me to a state of amusement. You can always bank on senior citizens for a chortle; more so because they stubbornly fail to see the funny side.
While the elderly are always good for a laugh, small children are also wonderfully engaging, particularly when they don’t get their way. After listening to little Bobby harp on for a full five minutes about how mean his mother is for not granting him a Snickers bar, the gift as she eventually snaps, slides off her moccasin, and warms the back of his knees with its business side, is nigh-on incalculable. As I have already mentioned, humor is at its most potent when dark, especially when at another’s expense. I’m not saying I condone child cruelty or anything nefarious like that; simply that Bobby had it coming to him and his sniveling pleas are sweet music to my ears. Just to heighten the ecstasy, I then add a Snickers to my tab and eat it enthusiastically at the window, just to crush the poor boy’s spirit a little further. You must think me some sort of bastard but, I assure you, that isn’t the case. I just like nougat.
Animals are always on-hand to raise a smile; once the humans have all but dried-up. I consider myself a cat lover but that isn’t to say that I’m willing Mr Tibbs on as he attempts that highly unlikely five-foot leap from the fence post to the nearby garden chair. Should his calculations be incorrect and he come a cropper, then I’m the first to rush over and offer my condolences…right after I’ve uploaded the clip to YouTube and finished working on the caption for my meme. Comedy can come at anytime, from any given situation, and blight whomever it feels like smiting. Should I be the one falling from grace; then I grant Mr Tibbs first dibs on a belly laugh at my expense. You see I’m not a bad person; merely playful. If you can think of a more rewarding pastime than frequently testing your bladder then I welcome your thoughts.
Repeat viewings of classic horror movies can prove a surprising source for sitcom. For a long time, John Carpenter’s The Thing scared me senseless, and the notorious blood-test scene gave me a severe dose of the willies. I imagined how despairing I would feel sitting between Garry and Childs as Palmer’s head split open like a honeydew and began to digest Windows before their very eyes. It’s a terrifying thought, at least for the first few views until, eventually, you master your fear, and discover the plutonium concealed within. For added comedy value, accompany said scene with The Mavericks’ Dance The Night Away and hold onto your bowels.
Alas, there are some things in life which just aren’t funny. Searching for the silver lining isn’t always a prosperous pursuit and, inevitably, those frowns are waiting in the wings to wipe those smirks off our faces. I suffer from recurrent depression and, some days, just lifting my head from the pillowcase can be a troublesome endeavor. That is where a close rapport with comedy comes in more than handy. It matters not what shit sandwiches are being prepared for you downstairs; as long as there’s a dotty geriatric, embittered brat, or short-sighted kitten along your daily route. I’ll continue my search for the light side of crisis as long as there is breath in my lungs. Moreover, I’m not choosy. Whoever decided that farts aren’t amusing obviously isn’t eating their roughage or doesn’t take enough baths. Any house guest not mortified by leaving flush-resistant floating battleships in your latrine is evidently bereft of a GSOH. And anyone who fails to see the funny side of sneezing whilst clutching a tepid mug of coffee isn’t worth knowing anyhoots. Nope, it’s clown shoes all day long for me. I’m with Ronald McD and loving it.
Click here to read The Laughter Tonic
Engaging and poignant as always, Keeper. And on that note, KEEP FIGHTING and write on…