Laughter is Public Silliness

When I was a kid my cousin Abby and I used to laugh a lot. It didn’t take much to get us started. Once we’d start laughing we’d feed off each other and would laugh and laugh sometimes getting into trouble for laughing instead of eating our dinner.

As we grew older and the teen hormones kicked in the laughter went away. Mine didn’t come back until decades later when I met my husband who allowed my inner child to run free again. I’m sure he questioned the logic of letting the genie out of the bottle the other day when we were eating at McDonalds.

Three construction workers sat at the table next to us and one of them let out a big loud belch. It wasn’t a dainty little burp either. It was loud and juicy and something you just don’t hear in public.

Now along with the propensity to laugh I also have a habit of making faces. Imagine for a moment Lucy of I Love Lucy hearing a loud belch. Her spoon would stop halfway to her mouth, her eyes would get really big, and she’d freeze with her mouth open in that wide eyed stare. I don’t know how closely I matched the Lucy look but I know I got at least halfway, enough to catch the attention of the guilty person.

He turned to me and apologized. “M’am, I’m soooo sorry! I surely do apologize, m’am!” I dared not speak and just nodded my acceptance and attempted to go back to eating. It didn’t work.

It started as a snicker under my breath, hiding behind my hand in an attempt to stifle it but before long it erupted into full blown out loud laughter and I couldn’t stop. I think it was the “m’am” that did it. I don’t know but the laughter started to feed itself and I was laughing harder and harder until my face turned bright red and tears were rolling down my cheeks.

I simply couldn’t stop laughing. It was quite a spectacle and my poor husband, who hates to be the center of attention in public, couldn’t do a thing but sit there knowing that all eyes were on us. It lasted for several minutes and no doubt the three construction workers left with quite a story to tell.

I’m sure that my husband didn’t expect this when he started feeding my inner child. I’m in my early fifties and where you might expect a child or a teenager to be silly in public, you sure don’t expect a 50 year old woman to do it. Me? I love my inner child. I fully embrace her. Laughter keeps you young and if my inner child is any indication I expect I’ll live a long time.

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