I admire my mother's ability to laugh. Often, joyfully, unrestrained. Tears can stream down her face in response to a Zits comic strip or episode of King of Queens. More endearingly, my father, brother and I can cause her to erupt into laughter.
Of course, earning someone's laughter based on your clever wit is gratifying. So it pleased me that one of my ruminations about surgery, which made it into my blog, so completely amused her. Here's the lines, again: "I also got used to nurses and doctors regularly telling me, 'Show me your incision.' I’d lift my gown up, feeling I should be getting Mardi Gras beads each time."
To show her apprecation, she repeated the joke or asked me to say it again to assorted neighbors and family members. It was like she was trotting out a child who she considered a great musical prodigy, only to have people grit their teeth and politely clap. Except people didn't clap. They just kind of looked at us blankly.
After an unethusiastic response from my aunt and uncle when my mom told the joke this weekend, she tried to explain. You know, women show their boobs to get beads at Mardi Gras. No, they got it. "It's just you told us it the other day," my aunt said flatly.
The next day I suggested that perhaps people did not share our humor or they just didn't get it. So perhaps we should switch to a catheter joke. When catheters are involved, the laughs never end.