Today in class we talked about joking in a foreign language. Something like "You're pretty smart if you can do it..." "Well, I guess I'm not very smart, I'm not good with jokes..." "Oh, that's because you're just a very serious person...."I've been thinking about this ever since because I don't think I'm very serious person!
I may not get jokes, but I can laugh at myself and I don't think there's a day that doesn't find me laughing. In the darkest hours of my adult life I think I've always found something bright - and amusing.
I doubt that I was born this way - I certainly don't remember being like this as a child. In fact, in old family photos I'm often pouting while the rest of the family smiles widely. So I've always thought it was something learned... My mother told me that I was the key to my own happiness and my father quoted Proverbs like "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine but broken spirit drieth the bones." But probably this wouldn't have dented me in the least if our family hadn't laughed so much together. Deep-bellied laughs that really were medicinal.
4 people who know how to laugh - and do!Learned behaviour or not... I'm sure Jane Austen has it right when she calls that elasticity of mind that chooses to be comforted "the choicest gift of heaven."