It’s an old cliche that laughter is the best medicine. I don’t know about that. Honestly, it depends. After I’ve had a lot of blood work, I’d much rather some chocolate than a deep-belly-laugh session. There are times when I feel weighted down - with worry, with pain, with frustration. During those times, a hot fudge sundae isn’t going to help, but a hearty laugh might.
However, I’m slightly embarrassed to admit what makes me laugh. Sure, I have the usuals - a tickle on the bottom of my foot, watching my son dance, a clever joke. But what really gets me going is something that seems out of character, even to me.
I admit that I am a kindergarten teacher at heart, always on the lookout for those untied shoelaces. And while I don’t offer to tie strangers’ laces, I do remind them to be careful because their laces are untied. I constantly remind my fourth-grade students to face forward while walking, to be careful when lifting their chairs off their desks, to walk slowly when the hallways are slippery on a rainy day.
But, I have a dark side. I find absolute delight in watching videos showing people falling, especially if I know the fall was planned and no one was hurt. There are two movies starring Sandra Bullock that I can think of in this context.
Miss Congeniality starred Sandra Bullock as an undercover FBI agent competing in the Miss USA Pageant. During one presentation, Sandra Bullock’s character loses her footing, falls down, and then pops back up with her hair sticking up on a Statue of Liberty-like crown.
All About Steve had one super-memorable moment for me. It was depicted in the movie’s trailer (which I watched several times). Sandra Bullock walks purposely and quickly, not noticing her proximity to a large hole. She subsequently falls into this huge hole. The trailer showed video footage of her fall, being replayed by another character in the movie. (I’m not the only one who found it worthy of watching more than once).
I don’t just laugh. I laugh until tears form in the corners of my eyes. I laugh until I’m wheezing and need to use my inhaler. I laugh until my own laughter sounds ridiculously high-pitched and I start laughing all over again.
There’s an Irish proverb that states, “A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book.” I haven’t achieved the long sleep yet, but at least I know how to get the good laugh.