Friday, November 13, 2009
I laugh really, really hard. Not just loud, but athletically. I don’t just laugh, I pound the table, stamp my feet, snort. Spew cocktail peanut and cracker crumbs across the table. Possessed and exorcised at the same time. Worse yet, if there’s the slightest suspicion that any scrap of humor was my invention, I bellow my appreciation to the clouds.
How wrong that is, on so many levels. Ever since I was ten years old, I wanted to be a quiet, sophisticated wit who could say something just killing, and acknowledge such brilliance with one raised eyebrow and that little half smile. You know the one – that cool little twist to the lips, like an Emma Peel or James Bond. “So, my dear, you [insert deadly humor], isn’t that true?” [eyebrow lift, lip twist.]
Instead, I’m all gums and long teeth, braying and spraying, regardless of the company, regardless even of what I’ve said. Sometimes I’ll give myself a round of applause as friends look on in amazement.
Brevity isn’t the soul of wit, you can have one without the other. Still, it’s a start. My humor is not a stiletto, able to reach the heart with one lethal jab. Mine is a larger instrument, an axe with a loose handle, that when swung, tends to break all the jelly jars at once. But you've got to admit, it’s over quickly.