Sunday, July 16, 2006

Laughter

Time for another thoughtful post! Horray!

Please read the below post as well. Thank you.

Why is it, I wonder, that much of our time is devoted to making others laugh?

My first thought was simple: attention. People loved others paying attention to them, so they make them laugh to accomplish this goal.

But that can't be right. Plenty of the quiet people who would want nothing more than to have no one ever pay attention to them make jokes. These are the people that are awkward in front of a crowd, hate it when people compliment them, and rarely speak up, no matter how brilliant the idea.

Another contradiction is simpler: there are other, easier ways to get attention. Yelling, standing on chairs, and (I would go so far as to say) murder.

Attention is clearly not the primary motive.

The answer is far more exciting, I suppose. Perhaps exciting enough to blog about.

It's the laughter.

That sound the people make when a joke has entertained them. For some it is nothing but silence as they double over, for others it is a loud guffaw. For Frances it is a rather squeaky roller-coaster.

Not really the point.

People want to make others laugh because laughter indicates happiness. People, when they are making jokes, want other people to happy. It causes no joy to make a joke and have no one laugh (another reason it is not attention: making a bad joke gets you the same attention, but is not satisfying). Quite simply, people make jokes for the enjoyment of others. It is merely an act of good will.

So the next time you make a joke, remind people you are only doing it out of the goodness of your heart.

This post gave mankind too much credit. Tomorrow I'll have to be more cynical.

5 comments:

Jen said...

=( no book thing about me? Darn. Anyway, here's my short answer to the problem:

Take out your old halloween costume from last year, which just happens to be a ghost costume. Put it on, (the large ghost costume will fit perfectly over the vase) and on your way out grab a bottle of liquid soap. Run out of the house screaming and hope that the people bombing your house will either be afraid or not notice you. Once you are long gone, use the soap as a lubricant to slip the vase off.

Jon said...

Jokes and laughter can also be used as a ploy, and often is, especially by me, to cover up one's actual feelings or thoughts or concerns etc.

Jen said...

I finally decided to update my blog. =D

Ali said...

ookay her'es what you do:

Since i have babysat a lot and every time a kid manages to get some body part stuck in something, you will know to use margerine to get it off your head. Then run out of the back door of your house into a shed or something and stay there til the bombing is done.

Leah said...

Awww! Sam's being all touchy-feely (man, that just gave me a bad image for some reason..). That period seemed wrong. Moved my answer because it seemed more people answered here. Achem:
Shatter the vase and get the hell out of there! You can collect the insurance money because it will simply be assumed the vase was destroyed in the bombing. Also, carrying said delicate vase would've slowed you down so you would've died too and not be able to care about the stupid vase anyhow. Heck, claim there was a smaller priceless Ming vase inside it while you're at it!
You should probably get to a bomb shelter or equally stable shelter.