How Humor Helps Me To Cope

I’ve been in the humor business for over 40 years, so I guess I could be classified as an “expert” in the business of humor. But, I don’t consider myself an expert in humor…just a lot of experiences… good and bad! Over the years, I’ve never gotten tired of putting a smile on somebody’s face, even if it’s just for a few seconds. The sound of laughter is great, and I think everyone likes it. Being in the humor business started for my when I was eleven years old, and I’ve been at it ever since.

We all know that laughter is the best medicine, and it has been humor that has helped me to cope through me darkest days, and there have been many! Humor has been therapy for me, and I use it though thick and thin! Every time I put a smile on somebody’s face, it makes my day and gives me a lift. I know I have done something important to make someone happy and that’s important to me.

So, how does humor help me to cope? Example: I was in the hospital for about a week recently, and I was admitted to the intensive care unit, with bleeding in the stomach. I was conscious and the medical staff were doing tests, etc. After arrived, a nurse came into my room, carrying a clip-board, and she was going to ask me about 15 questions, so we got started.

Every time she would ask me a question, I would answer it with a silly, ridiculous answer in an attempt to make her laugh, and then I would follow up with a straight and serious answer, etc. It was a little game I played with her, and she seemed to enjoy it. There are two types of humor. 1) memorizing jokes and other material for presentation. 2) Spontaneous humor, where the humor is done in real time…or at the moment. Being in the hospital, this was my attempt at doing spontaneous humor, because I didn’t know what the nurse was going to ask me. The questions and answers went something like this:

Nurse: “Mr. Aragon, do you smoke?”

Jerry: “Only when I’m on fire!”

Nurse: “Mr. Aragon, do you drink?”

Jerry: “Drink what? Tomato juice, milk…what? No, I don’t drink anymore…I don’t drink any LESS,

either!” (Gotcha!)

Nurse: “Mr. Aragon, are you allergic to anything?”

Jerry: “Only to a nosey nurse, who keeps asking me dumb questions and won’t let me get my beauty rest, while I’m on my death bed! Did you hear me…my DEATH bed?”

Nurse: “Mr. Aragon, do you have any pain?”

Jerry: “Yes, I have a pain in the butt, and guess who’s causing it?” (hint, hint!)

The nurse had a great sense of humor, and we had a good time! Anyway, the questions and answers went something like that. I remember one question when I managed to have the nurse in “stitches,” get it?” Stitches! Hospital…nurse…surgeon..HELLO…are you with me? (I can’t imagine why so many people think my humor is so dry and off the wall) After the question and answer session, the nurse went off to do her duties for the rest of the day.

Late in the afternoon, and before the day shift was over, the nurse came back into my room, and gave my a big hug! “What was THAT for?” I asked. “That’s for making me laugh this morning and making my day,” she said. and she left for the day. The big hug made my day, too! And, this is an example of how humor helps me to cope, and sometimes under serious conditions like being in a hospital. And no, I don’t get hugs everywhere I go, but a smile will help to keep my spirits high.

All of us have made somebody laugh at one time or another, and we all know how good it feels. The gratification from putting a smile on someone’s face cannot be measured. And, it doesn’t have to be through the use of humor. We all put smiles on people’s faces in our own unique way.

Give a child a present at Christmas on his or her birthday, and watch that child open that gift. The child’s face lights up…a big smile on that child’s face! You get a warm feeling in your heart; maybe a lump in your throat, and glassy eyes…right? It’s a warm feeling you have all over, and it nothing do to with humor, etc. It has to do with giving!

Mother’s and father’s know all too well, when a child brings a smile to their faces. When that child says that first word; takes that first step; takes that first wobbly bike ride, and starts school, etc. The parents get that smile and warm feeling all over!

Aside from the parents, school teachers, more than anyone else, know the great satisfaction they get from seeing a student write that first sentence; do that first math problem; and pass that first test. And, that’s why I think school teachers do what they do…the gratification of it all. They deal with the students everyday…up close and personal. But, everyone puts a smile on someone’s face in their own way. For example:

Farmers and ranchers put food on our tables and that makes us happy, right? What would we do without the truckers and delivery people who put that food on the table? Engineers who make our lives more comfortable, and all of our useful gadgets. All the people who make all the goodies we enjoy…bake goods, ice cream, etc. The medical people who keep us healthy. The transportation people who get us from one place to another. And, what would we do without the garbage people who make us happy, when they take the garbage away, and keep insects from spreading disease. The construction people who built our houses, apartments, and work places, etc. Were you happy when you moved into that new house? Retailers, service people, financial people who help us in so many different ways, and the list goes on and on!

I worked for an engineering company for over ten years. And, if there is a piece of metal on the table; wire; epoxy; glue; wire mesh, it wasn’t much by itself. But, put all these things together and now you have measuring devices that do research on: earthquakes; volcanoes; hurricanes; lightning; flood control; airline safety and on and on. And, when I worked in engineering, I always felt I was contributing to make things better for humans, animals, and the environment! And indirectly, I was putting a smile on someone’s face someplace, etc.

So, people in America share and give of themselves in every occupation and profession. Everyone has something to share, give, and contribute to make things better in America, and to make someone smile. Everyone has a passion that makes that person happy, and hopefully that passion makes others happy as well.

My passion just happens to be humor, and I take it everywhere I go. Humor for me, has been an obsession since I was a kid! From a young age, my mission in life, has been to put a smile on somebody’s face, that will make that person happy. Humor has not been an 8 to 5 job for me…it’s 24/7! I work all holidays and never take any time off…and, I love it!