I wish I could have met Mark Twain or Will Rogers or Bob Hope. They all shared a perspective on life that I think is essential to any amount of happiness. They made people laugh and they did it by telling the truth. One of my favorite Twain quotes is this one, “I did not attend his funeral but I wrote a nice note saying how much I approved of it.” When you can make a joke about someone’s funeral and people still think it’s funny you have really arrived as a humorist. I have patterned my writing after men like Twain, Rogers and Hope and I try really hard to tread that fine line between the honest truth and too much truth. Too much hurts people and that would never be something I could feel good about. It’s really important to leave something to the imagination too. If you let people fill in their own experiences, they will enjoy it that much more. Often times it’s the part you leave unsaid that is the funniest because everybody sees it in their own unique way.
My life has been one long wonderful ride and I wouldn’t change a thing. I have been many places, met lots of interesting people and I still have a good enough memory that I can now reflect on all those moments in this blog. People just make me laugh so much. The absurdity of every day life still amazes me today. Just when I think I have seen it all, another day arrives with something new to alter my reality once more. Mostly, it is just the parade of humanity that fascinates me and keeps me going.
I have been given a great gift, or so I am told. I can actually write things that people want to read and more often than not they think I’m funny. I can’t take credit for all that because I really am just retelling funny stuff that has happened to me over the years. The only thing I feel responsible for is my lifelong desire to find humor in every possible event. I learned that from my Dad. He never had a bad attitude about anything. Even when I had my accident with the car on my bike and I vandalized my teacher’s car he found a way to make a joke about it. That took so much of the pain away and made it possible for me to start making it up to him. I knew he was hurt by the things his son had done but he never lost faith in me and he never lashed out at me. He made me laugh at myself and then he laughed with me just to show me I was forgiven. There is no better lesson to teach our children than this simple message.
Everyone will experience failure in their life. Not everyone survives it. All it takes is for one other person to reach out and turn the pain into something funny and then share that humor with each other. When we do this for each other we will become happier people ourselves. A good sense of humor should be shared as often as possible. Smiles and laughter never hurt anybody but they are most certainly contagious diseases. I leave you with one more quote that really expresses why this works, “Laughter is the closest thing to the grace of God.” Karl Barth
©Guy R. Horst and grhgraph.wordpress.com, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Guy R. Horst and grhgraph.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.