Tag Archives: laughter

Thursday Thirteen: Simple Pleasures.


(Our neighbor the osprey, with mullet for lunch, from http://vivanickdrake.deviantart.com/)

Life is full of simple pleasures, and these are thirteen of mine.

  1. A good hot bath.  When I was a kid, on a very cold day, my body learned the bliss of total physical pleasure.  All from a simple tub of hot water.  I have spent the rest of my life following that bliss.
  2. Passing someone in the car on the highway.  There is a sweet sense of power that can only be achieved by pressing the pedal to the floor.
  3. Sneezing.  I know some people don’t appreciate the loss of control inherent in the involuntary clearing of the nasal passages, but it is the closest thing to an orgasm for a reason.
  4. Saying “I love you.” I do it as often as possible, to as many people as I can.  And I mean it every time.  Luckily, as a teacher, I have a captive audience.
  5. Collecting cards.  No matter how bleak the world of people and their politics gets, I can always picture my current cardboard obsessions in my mind and turn the corners of my mouth upward into a smile.
  6. Telling a good story.  My life is like a scene from Pulp Fiction, quite often.  I really enjoy the memories that my days have created… especially when I get to share them with new friends.
  7. Crying at a scene from a favorite film that I have already seen at least sixty times.  It just happened again last night with Love Actually, actually.
  8. Laughing until we cannot breathe.  Nina is really good at this.  Sometimes she causes it, and sometimes she gets swept up in it.  Last week we did it during a hockey party, with everyone in the house doubled up in knots on the floor, and we all missed a penalty shot!  Good times.
  9. Getting home from work and shedding the clothes.  A sense of relief and freedom that happens Monday through Friday.
  10. Watching the ospreys fishing in the lake.  Birds of prey are simply amazing creatures.
  11. Realizing how insanely detailed the human organism is.  Imagine trying to build a machine that could decide to reach into your pocket and feel around for a specific object, and then pull it out without anyone seeing you do it.
  12. Paying bills online.  Of course that is predicated on having enough money to pay them.  Lately we have been just barely making it, but it feels real good when I have everything covered.
  13. Comments on the blog!  It may be a bit impersonal, but that does not detract from the fact that there is one big community out there sharing lives with each other.  And that includes you and me.  I love you.  Thanks for stopping by.

(And make sure you visit http://thursdaythirteen.com/ to get involved in the party.)


Filed under Thursday Thirteen.

No Wonder I Build My Life Around Laughter.


(reversal rat from http://animator.deviantart.com/)

This morning during my meditation by the lake, the spiral canal that faces our parking lot was full of floating detritus.  Coconuts, bottles, seaweed… and two dead animals.  There was a huge rat floating right next to a small box turtle.

Of course I took it as a sign.  The first thing I learned upon googling the oracle?  Rats laugh.  No wonder I love them so much.  Check this out:

It was discovered that rats emit short, high frequency, ultrasonic, socially induced vocalization during rough and tumble play, and when tickled. The vocalization is described as a distinct “chirping.” Humans cannot hear the “chirping” without special equipment. It was also discovered that, like humans, rats have “tickle skin”: certain areas of the body that generate more laughter response than other areas. The laughter is associated with positive emotional feelings, and social bonding occurs with the human tickler, resulting in the rats becoming conditioned to seek the tickling. Additional responses to the tickling included: those that laughed the most also played the most, and those that laughed the most preferred to spend more time with other laughing rats. This suggests a social preference to other rats exhibiting similar responses. The initial goal of Jaak Panksepp & Jeff Burgdorf’s research was to track the biological origins of joyful and social processes of the brain by comparing rats and their relationship to the joy and laughter commonly experienced by children in social play. Although the research was unable to prove rats have a sense of humor, it did indicate rats can laugh and express joy. Chirping by rats is also reported in additional studies by Brian Knutson of the National Institute of Health. Rats chirp when wrestling one another, and before receiving morphine or having sex. The sound has been interpreted as an expectation of something rewarding.”


Filed under Rambles