The Belly Laugh

So I was driving down to SLC to do another book signing (didn’t sell any books, but I saw my cousin Kristy, so the trip was worth it). Saturday radio is almost as exciting as collecting early French tin foil. There are the travel shows which are bad. There are the garden shows which are worse. But perhaps the more pitiful of all are the car shows. I don’t think I could find any subject less interesting that people talking about fixing cars…

So why, after listening to the news, did I turn my dial to NPR hoping beyond hope that Tom and Ray Magliozzi were on? And why did I break out in a smile when I found out that for my entire drive I could sit and listen to them talk about fixing cars?

Because they are the masters of the belly laugh.

Car Talk is a funny program, and Tom and Ray are funny guys, but they aren’t especially funny. I can think of many different programs, books, or people who are much funnier. But I rarely laugh as long or as hard as when I’m listening to these guys. I break out in laughter at least 5 times during the show because they have broken out in laughter.

One lady called in, and one of the brothers made a funny comment. The other brother broke out into a great big belly laugh. I could hear him pounding on a table. After a few seconds, I could hear him pounding on a table, he was laughing so hard. He couldn’t stop. I couldn’t even remember what had been said, but suddenly I couldn’t stop laughing. The caller started laughing. Both brothers are still laughing. And in my mind, I can picture them doing the belly laugh.

A belly laugh is one where your whole front side just starts a twitching, jerking, and (if you’ve got the extra spare tire), jiggling. When you see somebody engaged in a good belly laugh, unable to stop, you can’t help but join in. Tears usually follow a belly laugh that goes on for more than 10 seconds. You usually have so much energy you have to slap a knee, or a table, or the back of somebody near you. It is just a happy, happy time in life, and you almost never belly laugh alone. It is something that has to be shared and is highly contagious.

So, treat yourself to a good belly laugh today. It’s fun, it’s good for you, and if you are lucky enough to belly laugh until you acheive the coveted snort, then by golly, count yourself lucky.

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One Response to The Belly Laugh

  1. Maria says:

    Is that like “Car Toons” that Homer Simpson reads? ;)

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