Tuesday, February 20th, 2007...1:37 am


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My Aunt Gail is a laughter coach by trade. She teaches laughter classes in her neighborhood in Harrisburg, PA. Aunt Gail believes in the physical act of laughter. She wants people to laugh, even without the aid of jokes or humor. When people begin to do this the simulated laughter becomes stimulated laughter. I’ve dubbed this “Laughter Without a Cause”.

Some people believe (Aunt Gail being one of them of course) that laughter can lead to better health through a stronger immune system, positive cardio-vascular effects, less stress and tension and an overall sense of happiness.

I realize this is all a bit unconventional and sometimes it might even be down right looney. The whole laughter movement was started by Madan Kataria, an Indian Doctor in Mumbai. Aunt Gail refers to a dude named Steve Wilson as her mentor. On Steve’s website he states that

“Today we are on the brink of nuclear disaster and wide spread international terrorism. We are at war within ourselves, which is why there is a war outside in the world today. If we can bring peace inside us through laughter clubs, then there will be peace outside, too.”

Perhaps, all Osama needs is to take a deep breath and let out a good laugh. Or not.

That quote seems like somebody is spreading a pretty thick layer of chocolate frosting on the pound cake. But, I’ll give you another quote that might carry a bit more weight. Mark Twain, a real American social icon once said that “the human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter”.

I’m down with the gospel of laughter. Like Mozzarella Sticks, that moment you wake up and realize it’s a weekend and the “Set It and Forget It” infomercial, laughter is pure happiness. If the act of laughter is so enjoyable why do we find it necessarily to trigger laughter? Why not just laugh whenever we damn well please.

I’m going to try laughing tomorrow morning on the subway. To me the subway is a warp zone state of hellish human misery where people zone out and try not to think. Well, tomorrow I’m going to laugh my way all the way to 28th street. Feel free (no reason necessary) to laugh your way to work as well.

I’m also including this viral video that you might have already seen on YouTube. If your still not convinced maybe this will do the trick.

  • H Gold

    Laughing on the subway:

    I too agree that the subway is the gateway to hell. If you look around every face is devoid of emotion. Everyone is a zombie.

    One day when I was one of these such people. A blind African American homeless man entered my subway car. He was one of those people that when you see them, you do feel horrible for them, but your immediate gut reaction is “please don’t come near me.” So as half the subway car was staring at this man wishing they chose a different car or that their stop would be the next one, the homeless man started singing. So what, you ask? This is a usual occurrence. Many panhandlers sing on the subway in order to guilt you into giving them your precious dime.

    Now close your eyes and picture this man. He hadn’t showered in many years, had weird things growing out of his body, half a leg, maybe “a” tooth. I immediately tensed up as he approached me, but his choice of song was amazing “IF YOU THINK I’M SEXY AND YOU WANT MY BODY, COME ON EVERYBODY SAY YEAH”

    Everyone on the subway immediately smiled and laughed.

    So did I give him any money?

    He was blind… he couldn’t see my guilt. I kept my dime. Don’t judge….I’m a student…I need it.