We’ve all done this don’t you think? Laugh when it was inappropriate? Laugh when we shouldn’t or when something isn’t even funny. Maybe even at something that’s sad.
We were watching a movie review of the new Clint Eastwood movie Gran Torino. It looks like an excellent movie and I will buy it when it comes out just because, hey, it’s Clint Eastwood.
But it’s apparently a very racist movie (I’m sure he redeems himself in the end) which had people wondering why there was so much laughter in the theaters during very hurtful and racist statements. There was an expert who tried explaining why people do this. Some people just get nervous. Some just simply can’t believe what’s being said and laugh out of shock. Remember how we all used to laugh at Archie Bunker? It didn’t mean we agreed with what he was saying or that we even found it funny but we, at least I, just couldn’t believe he was saying the things he was saying on TV.
Did anyone ever see the Mary Tyler Moore Show when Chuckles the clown dies? It’s explained a little more here. Everyone laughs the entire episode except for Mary. The funeral comes and everyone is sad but Mary breaks out in hysterical laughter. Here is it for those of you who want to see it.
I remember this episode and felt quite like Mary did. I also know I’ve laughed at things I shouldn’t have and at things that weren’t funny. Once it starts, it’s also very hard to stop. Have you ever gotten the giggles and no matter what, you couldn’t stop laughing even though at times you were in church or somewhere that you really had to stifle yourself? I remember my cousin Pam and I broke out into a fit of giggles once during supper at one of our uncles house. We made him so mad he made us go sit outside and even out there, all we had to do was look at each other and it all started over again and we really didn’t want to but just couldn’t stop.
This can also happen to me when I’m with my brother. We kind of read each other’s minds and there have been times I’m with him and can’t look at him or I know all hell will break lose and I will start laughing at the wrong thing. Not because I think it’s funny per say, but we can be awful smart asses when alone together.
I think the same thing can be said for smiling. I know there have been times when I’ve been so irritated and the only thing I could do was smile because I knew if I couldn’t keep it together, I’d really snap. I also smile if I tell a lie and my youngest son is the same way. Neither of us can tell a lie to save ourselves so we just grin. So does this just happen when we are uncomfortable? Do we smile or laugh in sadness or shock as well as when something is funny?
How about you? How many of you have had a fit of laughter or the giggles at the worst possible time?