JUST LAUGH

chickenofthesea_bookcoverIt’s no secret that there is a lot of stress going around these days. Money is tight for many of us, good (paying) jobs are scarce, there is a lot of tragedy and fighting going on around the world and the political arena is fraught with infighting.

With all that to deal with it’s easy for us all to get caught up in it all and get depressed and downtrodden. You can see the results of it wherever you go, road rage on the highways, negative tweets and facebook posts, reporters and political shock jocks railing against one thing or another and people walking around with huge frowns on their faces.

It’s real easy to get caught up in it all and I’m sure at one time or another we’ve all been there. So what’s the solution. Well I’m sure it’s not always easy but even at the worst of times a good laugh can at least help a bit.

Don’t get me wrong, I can be serious as can be when need be but I sure enjoy a good laugh even if it’s at my own expense. I guess that’s why if given the choice I will always choose a comedic movie over a serious one.

And to those who scoff at comedies I’ve found within them a great deal of serious issues being dealt with. It’s just that they do it through comedy. It’s probably why am a big Ernest (Jim Varney) and John Candy fan (God rest their sweet souls). Both of them were generally cast as under dogs who didn’t have a lot going for them but had big hearts and a desire to make life better for those around them. They did so through laughter and self effacing humble pie. What they showed us was that even at the worst of times there is something to be joyous about and good to be found even in a bad situation.

When faced with anger directed towards us we seem to have three options. We can get angry with the person or persons, ignore them or try to make light of it. The first one is generally the easiest and often seemingly the most typical way to respond but one that generally only ends up making us feel bad or disastrous in the end. The second is tougher and in many cases the best option but sometimes the lack of action on our part might bug us for the rest of the day because we didn’t act. The third is definitely the toughest because we have suck up our initial response of striking back and then find some humor in it all.

I remember once while our family was driving on a two lane road outside of Boston (anyone who has driven in the area can attest to how aggressive the driver are there) and apparently I wasn’t going fast enough for the driver behind me (I admit I’m a bit of a slow poke). When I looked back he was close enough to my bumper to see the eyes of the dead bugs on my trunk and he was all red faced and screaming all sorts of epithets at me and shooting me the bird.

Though my first inclination was to strike back I noticed he was with his family so I decided not to. Somehow as I watched him continue on I somehow found his behavior hilarious and I started to laugh and wave hello to him. At first I could tell this only made him all the more angry but after a bit he must have realized he was being a total butt head and he too started to laugh and wave.

Now I know this situation could have ended up deteriorating even further if I wasn’t dealing with a sane person but if showed me how we can help each other simmer down and even smile if we approach things in a light and positive manner.

There are times that I find myself getting all tied up in a knot over something stupid or trivial and it is often only by being called on it by someone else that I can see that I too am being an irrational butt-head. Fortunately after most of those instances, once I’ve been made aware that I’m being a butt-head and accept it,  I end up laughing at myself  for being one which helps me to change my attitude.

It has been said time and again “laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you’re all alone”. While I’m not certain it’s the truth in all instances, at the same time I certainly don’t want to end up alone so I may as well continue to laugh and I hope you do the same so I’ll have someone to watch comedies with.

Thanks for checking In and I hope you smile your way through to next week when we talk again.

Aloha, Paul

About authorpaulhayden

Author, artist, screenwriter, environmentalist. husband, father, surfer, surfing instructor, volunteer.
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