Those of you in my age group probably remember when Saturday Night Live was busy producing new talent on a daily basis. So many of the great comics got their start on that show – Gilda Radner and her plethora of hilarious characters – Chevy Chase, Artie Johnson, Jane Curtin, John Belushi, Billie Crystal Laraine Newman, Martin Short, Dana Carvey, Bill Murray, Eddie Murphy and on and on. Most of the humor of that time would be politically incorrect today, but they sure brought us some much needed laughter back in the day.
Today we’re in a much similiar situation. We’ve been trying desperately to adjust to isolating, wearing masks, abstaining from being part of large crowds. We’ve been expected to follow the rules from the CDC, but crime rates, suicides, mental illness and obesity have become unwelcome side effecs of COVID19. We need a really good laugh – don’t you agree? Laughter really is great medicine for so many ailments. When we have become cocooned for more than a year, it’s difficult to find much to laugh about, but I believe it is even more important during times of crisis to look for the humor in things.
There are days when I wonder what on earth I’m still doing here. I spend hours trying to unbderstand all the new technology when I could have completed three loads of laundry. I wake up early only to spend my “alone” time thinking about all the things I should be doing rather than doing them. The morning speeds into afternoon and before I know it, I’m ready to go to bed and start the whole process all over again. I’m aging with grtreat resistance. I don’t want to grow up! I’m not ready to die. I know I’ve a few good years left in me, but as you get older you want to get everything in before you kick the bucket.
Since I spend so much time at my computer, I should really get one of those exercise machines that at least keeps your feet moving. Think of the steps I could accumulate by sitting at the computer. Continuing to move physically isnt as easy as it used to be. Sometimes we have to force ourselves to do so. I have the feeling that the minute I stop, so will my life.
I’ve mentioned my dream of one day doing stand up comedy, but there are so many obstacles now. Gone are the days of using a character voice that imitates a particular dialect or accent. Making fun of yourself isn’t acceptable. Making fun of others is null and voice. I agree that we need to be sensitive to offending or hurting others’ feelings, but sometimes seeing someone slip on a banana peel and taking a pratt fall can lift our spirits too. A pie in the face is as old as the hills when it comes to comedy. I’ve actually done that in my lifetime.
When our feelings get stepped on, we’d suck it up and take the bullying or let it roll off our backs and move on. I’m not saying that it’s good to laugh at another persons expense or to be insensitive to things that would offend. Words have always had the ability to hurt, but our attitudes about them often supercede the lessons we can learn from them. Of course we need to be kind to one another, but doesnt’ that atribute have to be taught as one of the basic tenets for life? Caring about each other will provide the armor necessary to withstand the words, the hatred, the meaness that accompany bigotry and mindless thinking. Teach your children to be kind to others, but don’t dwell so much on the negative.
There is a danger of creating false beliefs and futhering unrest. Teach them how to engage others in conversation, problem solve through team work and building each other up. We all need to feel necessary to society. We also need to lighten up, which takes a great deal of faith in troubled times, but faith leads to belief and confidence in overcoming the impossible.