By age seven and a relatively new and mature Big Brother, I had tired of most Halloween traditions. The circus always bored me. And those silly physical comedies such as “The Three Stooges”, “Little Rascals”, and “Laurel & Hardy” seemed excruciatingly foreign.
I barely even appreciated any Saturday morning cartoons, except for perhaps a random “Mighty Mouse” and “Fractured Fairy Tales”, which I interpreted as cautionary, allegorical, and rife with symbolism. Of course, I had yet to learn those terms from Sr Edward Patricia. That never stopped me, though, from explaining, deconstructing, and interpreting to/for my cousin Dennis
Yes, I was the epitome of a mid-century nerd, a bookworm, and surely the last one in my class to understand the importance and power of humor.
Of course, now that I am in my fifties (and forever tempted to look back in both regret and resolve), I have finally and safely discovered the types of humor and their forums that “stir both my loins and imagination”.
And while I would fail miserably if charged with the mission, I respect those whose calling it is to entertain, rouse, cheer, and distract.
God bless the mirth makers who, in these difficult times, help us to insulate our hopes. On certain gloomy and desolate Thursday evenings, I am convinced that the impact of the noble clown can be quite profound.
“As I stumble through this life,
help me to create more laughter than tears,
dispense more cheer than gloom,
spread more cheer than despair.
“Never let me become so indifferent,
that I will fail to see the wonders in the eyes of a child,
or the twinkle in the eyes of the aged.
“Never let me forget that my total effort is to cheer people,
make them happy, and forget momentarily,
all the unpleasantness in their lives.
“And in my final moment,
may I hear You whisper:
“When you made My people smile,
you made Me smile.”
(Image: Poster by Beppo Lotti, 1925.)