One day, a college professor greeted his new college class. He stood up in front of the class and said that if anyone in the class was a moron, and if they were, they should stand. After a minute a young man stood up. Then the professor asked the kid if he actually thought he was a moron. The kid replied, “No, I just didn’t want to see you standing there all by yourself.”
They say that laughter is the best medicine, so why not get a hefty dose during this National Humor Month? April can often be a stressful time of the year. With taxes due on the 15th and finals soon approaching, it can sometimes be difficult to even force a smile. That is why it is so important during this time of year to take a minute to just laugh or tell a funny joke or story.
Best-selling humorist Larry Wilde, director of The Carmel Institute of Humor, founded National Humor Month in 1976. The idea behind National Humor Month is to heighten public awareness of the power of laughter according to www.larrywilde.com/month. Laughter has many therapeutic effects that can improve the quality of life, and currently is being explored by health and medical professionals. Some of its therapeutic effects are lower blood pressure, promotes relaxation, reduces stress and increases oxygen levels in the blood which gives people more energy. It also increases the endorphins in the body resulting in an overall sense of well-being. Have you ever just heard someone laugh and could not help yourself from joining in? That is because laughter is contagious, so why not spread the joy. Surely, people notice the laugh tracks that play during some of their favorite sitcoms, but what people probably do not know is that producers do this because they are aware of the contagious effects of laughter.
Statistics show that people are 30 times more likely to laugh in the presence of others than just by themselves. There are many things that a person can do in order to laugh. Be open-minded and on the look out for humor because it exists almost anywhere. Laughter is all around us from a funny TV show or movie, or just sitting back and reminiscing about past events with friends. Why not embrace it especially during National Humor Month? Everyone laughs from time to time, but as adults, humor seems to take a back seat to our busy schedules of work and school. Statistics show that children laugh on average 400 times a day whereas adults only laugh about 17 times a day.
It is sad to think everyone was once full of this magical substance but now the tank is almost on empty. If laughter can make a person feel better and spread joy to countless numbers of people, then why not laugh all the way to the bank? Keep a positive outlook on life and always try to have a smile on your face. Even a smile helps to exercise your facial muscles and reduce frown lines and wrinkles. Just like laughter, a smile can often be contagious.
During this National Humor Month, don’t be afraid to be funny. Spread the joy of laughter and we will all feel a little better.
Tony Higman is a fourth-year student majoring in psychology with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at AH577216@wcupa.edu.