Humour in horrendous times

Last Updated : 19 December 2022, 22:49 IST

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After India got clobbered in the T20 series against England, this forwarded message was making rounds on all mobiles, the following morning: “The delightful ‘positives’ in this drubbing are… There will be no squandering of four hours of extremely valuable time on a Sunday watching the Finals; not being on tenterhooks, thinking of India getting trounced by the Pak team; which means, no severe heart-thudding, or surplus stress. So, a blissful night-sleep.” The defeat largely obviated the need to light up lots of firecrackers. Corollary: salubrious environs sans sickening pollution. As ever, India adhered to its ancient tradition of keeping its son-in-law happy. (The Brit PM is the son-in-law of Infosys’ founder.)

Well, real humour can be a remarkable antidote to a range of negative emotions.

I recently called on a rather rotund, close relative. The moment I saw her, I tried giving her a tight hug. She was unprepared for this unexpected exuberance. She lost her balance and fell to the floor, injuring her back while holding a broken door handle! As I also got yanked, I waltzed and fell on her, writhing in pain, because of the contusion on my wrist, caused by my wire-thin bracelet that had gotten warped. What was truly amazing was that we both were laughing so hard, despite our terrible states, that tears came trickling down.

Again, while skimming through various subjects, my school friend and I came across some unpleasant past episodes, which snowballed into severe spats, forcing us to squabble nonstop. In between being seized by severe possessive pangs, she started making swipes at my Mumbai friends, too. With scathing sarcasm, she spewed, “Aren’t you greatly ‘hissing’ your Mindi-speaking’ friends?” (Actually, she wanted to say ‘missing’ my ‘Hindi-speaking’ friends.”

Yes, unwittingly, she had indulged in “Spoonerism” (interchange of the first letters of two words), thus sparking laughter bouts.

All of our animosity and squabbles over trivial matters had been instantly dispelled by the humor.

Humour can really revivify ruffled and rattled minds. Since, seeing the funny side of things, always facilitates fending off all the festering ill-feelings.

Laughter may not be the best medicine, but when it comes from the heart, much pain is relieved.

Published 19 December 2022, 17:10 IST

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