A man is sitting at a bar when a lady walks up. She says, ‘This is your lucky night. I’ve got a special deal for you. I’ll do absolutely anything you want for $300 as long as you can say it in three words.’ The guy thinks about it and replies, ‘Hey, why not?’ He pulls his wallet out of his pocket and lays $300 on the bar, turns to the lady and says slowly. ‘Paint…my…house.’
The third Pillar of Joy is my favorite, Humor. I love humor because nothing
brings a smile to my face or joy to my heart like humor. I personally think that humor is the ultimate expression of our soul. It feels right to truly laugh. I cannot watch horror movies. I just don’t enjoy them; they freak me out. That said, I have no issue sitting and laughing for an hour watching a comedy. Or, have you ever laughed so hard for such a long time that your face actually started to hurt? You probably had tears of joy rolling down your face too.
They also talked about teasing someone you love. This interested me because I wholeheartedly tease my wife and kids. It is never mean or belittling but more playful. They say it can be a statement of trust in a relationship. It is an indication that there is enough reservoir of goodwill that you are really saying, ‘I trust you. You trust me enough to know that I am not undermining you or disrespecting you. I love you.’ This is the intent, but I should double check that with my wife.
The archbishop then eloquently stated “laughter lifts us up, allows us to recognize and laugh about our shared humility, our shared vulnerabilities, our shared frailties. Life is hard, you know, and laughter is how we come to terms with all the ironies and cruelties and uncertainties that we face.” Wow that is amazing. I really think that this sums up humor beautifully. It is not just laughing at something funny. It is sharing something with somebody else and saying that there are terrible things everywhere in this world but we are going to embrace the good things and spread joy. Laughter truly brings people together. It cuts through tension or awkward silence like a hot knife through butter. Try starting a tough conversation with humor and see how it goes. I bet it will surprise you.
They end the chapter by saying laughter, like everything else, is a skill that needs to be learned. Start by laughing at yourself, it is really the easiest place to begin. Remember we are all human, we make mistakes and we need social interactions. So instead of bragging and watching people roll their eyes at you, why not try telling people how you locked your keys in your car. Or how you dropped your phone in the toilet… that was my second phone in two months. The first time I left it on the roof of my car with my wallet. Luckily I found my wallet; i was not so lucky with my phone. Needless to say I now own cell phone insurance.
It’s about humility. Laugh at yourself and don’t be so pompous or serious, “If you start looking for the humor in life you will find it.”
A guy is sitting at home when he hears a knock at the door. He opens the door and sees a snail on the porch. He picks up the snail and throws it as far as he can. Three years later there’s another knock on the door. He opens it and sees the same snail. The snail says: ‘What the hell was that all about?’