No, that’s it. That’s the entire blog post.
I don’t laugh.
This was brought to my attention, intervention-style, by my family. We were all sitting around and discussing something humorous, I think. It was hard to tell. And my mother mentioned that my father, in particular, tries especially hard to make me laugh. I, ironically, laughed at this. I said, “What do you mean? I laugh. I laugh all the time.” To which, my sister chimed in. She told me that I really didn’t and that she works hard to make me laugh, too. I was a bit dumbfounded. Here everyone, had kept this weird secret from me. This weird, laughable secret. Was I the joker, so serious? It was impossible. Wasn’t it?
So, I had a bit of an out of body experience. That is, I observed myself in daily life. I tried to track how I reacted to most things. I tried to note what happened after anyone said just about anything to me. And besides chuckling to myself when I unironically listened to “Milkshake” in a quiet office, the family was absolutely correct. I don’t laugh. And when I do laugh, it’s mostly at the expense of other people. Which is downright terrible.
What I have also found is that I try really hard to make other people laugh. I try to get people going by making fun of myself or poking fun at something else. Which I guess is okay. But it doesn’t make up for all of the time I have spent not laughing.
In the end, there’s two lessons here. First, try listening to yourself for a week. If you find you’re on a laugh diet, try to lighten up. I’m not saying to force it. There is absolutely nothing more awkward or annoying than a forced laugh. Just try to be a little more relaxed. Try to see the lighter side of it all. Then, if you find yourself trying to be the clown or the comic in every situation, try to let someone else have the spotlight. As any comedian can tell you, it is difficult to keep being the life of the party when you are “on” all of the time.
So, have I started laughing more? I don’t think so. Not yet. But I’m trying. And I’m thankful for my family. For however hard they try to make me laugh, I’ve never met anyone with a higher success rate than them. After all, laughter can be the best medicine, if you let it be.