THE KING OF LAUGHTER

Laughter is one of the realest, rawest and most natural states in which you will find a person; juxtaposed with being completely broken. It is as naked and vulnerable as being born sometimes. The essence, the abandonment of all stuffiness and embracing the joy of laughter is imperative for our health and equilibrium - as is the forbidden nature of some of it. It is an absolute necessity for coping with life on this mother earth we walk upon - and something to be nurtured and treasured dearly. It is holistic in nature and is a gift to embrace and deal with all moods.

For me it is as holy and intoxicating as music and the zone it puts me in; as is the spell it casts upon me. It can be the chimp that urinates on the staring crowd, the clown who holds up the mirror - or the beloved child in contagious hysterics over a new sight or sound. It is a great teacher. You cannot tailor it and you cannot fake it. Like pure love you cannot put conditions on it. If you ban the things we laugh at, you may just as well just ban all the things we do.

 

Trying to make somebody feel guilty about saying something that is supposedly politically incorrect is simply another way of saying 'do as you are told because I don't like it.' Well by whose so called standards anyway? That in itself is a very immature attitude. Sticks and stones. When did we all become seven years old again by being offended by everything? Actually I will take that back; seven year olds aren't, which speaks volumes. It is all subjective anyway and thankfully there have always been different genres of humour. Mature individuals among us have the ability to choose which we listen to and not to judge - which brings me to all this recent 'calling people out' malarkey. It seems it has now become acceptable for people to play God; even plausible to some - but only to others, never to themselves. Where is this deluded sense of superiority and moral high ground coming from? This has become a very dangerous thing. People cursed with inverted prejudice I have found are more than often just unhappy with themselves, which is sad, of course. They have just found a way of appearing 'right on' to deflect it. Jealousy too often plays a big part in this and they are simply projecting it onto you. You have simply become their big screen of make believe.

 

If I am offended by the colour blue, then I will never go outside in fear of seeing the sky - so should I deny everybody else the right to see it? Tell the sky it's wrong? Only go out at night time with my cloak and dagger at the ready, in case anybody else may be preparing to enjoy the day time when it arrives? How dare they. If it begins with one thing, then where does it end? We would have to ban everything. Wouldn't you rather laugh than find drama? I know I would. God it must be so exhausting staying so offended all the time - but contrary to this, some people don't just see, but also experience the real and greater problems in this world, then fight for something rather than against everything. They are too rich in tapestry to consider being so affected by so little. Let us not lose our sense of proportion for the sake of each other.

 

Laughter, often when life is dark, is simply alchemy. It is making the best of a bad situation. Isn't trying to hide the darkness as cowardly as shunning the light? There is a big difference between laughing at a situation and the person in it - just as there is between laughing at a condition and those with it. I am a fan of the former of each of the above. We can be aware of the serious nature of something whilst still involving laughter; one does not and should never negate the other.

 

There is no law against laughter - let's make that clear. If adults are taking this 'offended at everything I do not like' stance, then what hope do their children have at taking a joke? Humour is imperative for survival for people like myself and I am sure many others - so nobody, and I mean nobody, is going to tell me what I can and cannot laugh at. Laughter happens naturally, like a sneeze, like a twitch - something you often cannot help and something that feels wonderful partly because of that; as it is spontaneous and often unexpected. Like a song that comes on the radio that you haven't heard for aeons. How can you contrive such magic? How could you even want to.

If you want to live a prescribed version of life, then go ahead as it is your right - the difference being though, is I would never try and stop you; but I will defend my rights if you infringe upon mine. Respect my ways and other's rights to choose as we respect yours. Problems only begin when somebody starts finger pointing and blaming others for their own unhappiness. It is rarely true unless somebody is bullying or dropping bombs on innocent people.

 

Seeing humour in how ridiculous life can be, we can be, is the most healing thing in the world and also educational - if only we allow ourselves to be real. If you fall over I will in all probability laugh; I may even laugh a lot, but I will also be the first one to come over and help you up again - so understand there can be a balance rather than a banning of things. Like cancel culture; it's another way of closing your eyes to reality - but how will we learn if there is nothing left?

 

This is one of life's most important paradoxes - one I feel dearly needs to be learned, as many people consider it immature to laugh at oneself and other situations so much - when in actuality, it is the most mature and grown up attitude you can adopt to deal with life when it throws shit at you. Learning how to take a joke is something that you probably should have mastered when you were a child. If you are an adult and you still can't laugh at idiocy - particularly your own, then I would consider that a worry. Humour is only harmful or serious if you make it so - like much of life. There is a very large canyon between the laugh of the Jester and that of the cruel; between the one who laughs off the ridiculousness of a situation you are in like a Hyena - for you; with you - and the one who revels in seeing you there, so laughs at you. The latter I can still choose to switch off or walk away from. Self responsibility is key here.

 

Laughing at each other's differences is a must. Ironically it brings us together - it keeps us close with an enjoyable common bond, whilst keeping each other's feet on the ground. Yet at the same time laughter elevates us; helps us rise above the pain and the trivial things and people in life. Stopping people laughing at their differences will only divide us more.

 

You are the Kings and Queens of laughter if you choose to be so; your coronation sparked and crowned by the death of the stifled. Your court and its Jesters so very full of magic - re-birthing the merriment with hearts of lightness and minds of wise transmutation; the angels of glee by your side.

D.Sumbler

 

  HUMOUR AND MENTAL HEALTH CONDITIONS

 

A while ago there was a joke about Tourette's that won an award for the best joke of the year. There was nothing cruel about it to me; it was actually quite sweet - very tame. Because of this though, a certain person running a Tourette's association demanded an apology on behalf of all people with Tourette's. Firstly, this person does not have Tourette's Syndrome. Secondly, I do not wish to slaughter anybody for their actions; yet I will defend my own right as an individual to think and feel as I wish, Tourette's or not. Thirdly, it is not only patronising, but it is also a liberty for anybody to ask for an apology on behalf of all people with Tourette's - as by doing so, they are defining us all as feeling and thinking the same way just because we have the same condition. Maybe some souls wanted one, but I and plenty of others I know did not.

Expecting a soul with Tourette's to not only be politically correct, but also want an apology for so called politically incorrect humour? That is the only unfunny joke here - plus ironic. Also - coming from somebody who runs a group or association about the condition triggers big warning signs for me.

I also know this soul has done some greater good too, so I will see that above it all - but I find that sort of behaviour far more of a concern than any joke could ever be and it needs to be addressed. Nobody is an expert in Tourette's or any other condition more than those who have it. Let them decide for themselves. This conjures up images of John Callahan turning in his comedy grave with a not so silent V sign.

 

Do I think Tourette's is funny at times? Fuck yes. Just one example here - one of many: I feel an almost irresistible compulsion to press my nose against things or people when I am out some days. I actually did it on the top deck of a bus once when I thought I was alone - when hitherto unbeknown to me, a gentleman had climbed to the top of the stairs. On taking one look at me, he turned straight back round again in horror - then almost fell over trying to get back down. He looked petrified. Now if you don't find that funny, maybe you need to check your pulse.

 

Do I find it funny living with it 24/7? Fuck no; it's exhausting - but that's exactly why I feel the need to laugh at it as often as I can. It is like an exorcism and is my chosen and most treasured way of coping. In fact Tourette's aside, if it will stop talking to me for a moment - it is the same with life in general, as with many people. Taking the right to owning that away would be like stealing a wheelchair from somebody with no legs.

D.Sumbler