I‘m really popular with people because I’m so funny. I can’t remember jokes but I do have a quick wit and can ad-lib like a pro. And let’s face it, people love to laugh. It’s good for the soul. The best medicine of all. How could they not like me?
The people closest to me don’t like admitting that I’m so talented in the humour department. They’re quick to tell me, “That’s not funny”. My wife even warns people not to laugh because it just encourages me. And my kids go, “Da-ad”. They roll their eyes and they shake their heads. But the fact is, despite their protests, they laugh. Or, at least they laugh inside. I really am a super funny guy.
The other day my wife and I decided to go to the beach. Typically, as soon as we threw the cossies and towels into the back of the car, the dark green clouds started rolling in. We pushed on. The radio announced that a ferocious storm was tearing through the beach-side suburbs. High winds had torn off roofs and hailstones were reportedly as big as cricket balls.
“Hail stones as big as cricket balls,” I echoed.
“Ooh, imagine if you got hit on the head by one of those?” my concerned wife replied.
“Yeah, hit on the head with a hail stone as big as a cricket ball! Jeez, that’d knock you for a six!” I looked over at my wife with wide eyes and a cheeky grin.
“Just keep your eyes on the road, nut-case,” she said.
“Knocked for a six,” I repeated.
“I get it,” she said. “It’s not funny.” But she was smiling, so I reached across and poked her in the ribs. “Stop it,” she laughed. “It’s not funny. Stop it!”
Unperturbed, I put on my serious voice. She falls for it every time—God I love her.
“Do you know what you have to do though, if you do get hit on the head by a hail stone?”
“No?” she queried. Totally sucked in.
“Apparently, you put ice on it!” I laughed and I laughed and I laughed. It was a pretty cool one-liner, don’t you think? Look, I know it wasn’t the world’s best joke, and she’s only laughed too because laughing is contagious. But hey, a good laugh is a good laugh.
Seriously, the world is getting so pent up these days that my brilliant, personalised, one-on-one, stand up comedy, mostly goes unnoticed. Especially at work, everyone is so scared witless that they’re going to lose their job.
Take the receptionist, for example.
“I can’t believe,” she said, “that I have to go home after a full day’s work and vacuum the house before I cook dinner!” She’s a real sad sack, this one.
“You have to vacuum?” I asked with mock sympathy.
“Yes. I hate it. It hurts my back.”
“Yeah, you’re right, vacuuming sucks.” I delivered this with impeccable timing, with wide eyes and my irrepressible cheeky grin. I even did a little tap dance and threw my hands out in front.
She didn’t get.
“Tell me about it,” she whined. “And do you think anyone offers to help? Oh no—that’s Mum’s job.”
“Yeah, vacuuming sucks,” I repeated. This time I walked around the reception area miming the cleaner who does the carpets after hours. Plus, I hummed like a Hoover. She still didn’t get it! She’s one tough crowd, that one.
OK. One more shot.
“Hey Rita, what star sign are you?”
“Bull?” I bounced back.
“No, really, I am Taurus.”
I gave up. Swear to God, some people have no sense of humour.
My kids though, are the ultimate challenge. Despite the fact that I’m totally hilarious, because I’m their father, they simply refuse to let down their guard and laugh. It’s some unwritten rule that kids have about their parents. I’m sure at times they’ve literally burst their poo-foo valves trying to stop laughing at my comic genius.
Of all of them, Pearl, my eldest, is the toughest nut to crack. Should’ve called her, Macadamia. Anyway, every cheap Tuesday we go to the movies and during the film I always manage to cleverly craft together some brilliant joke to unleash upon her afterwards. She’s cottoned on to this, and says, “Dad I am only coming if you promise not to make up any of those stupid jokes.”
“I promise,” I reply. But I know, and she knows, I won’t be able to resist.
She even fakes being angry – it’s cute, but totally ineffectual.
I’ll never forget my best, most triumphant movie night joke of all. We went to see “Cowboys and Aliens”. It’s about a man who wakes up with this crazy metallic thingamajig stuck around his wrist. He has no idea how it got there, so a whole heap of this B-grade flick is based around his amnesia. When we walked out, Pearl, stared at me very serious, and said, “Dad, don’t you dare, I mean it Dad.”
As quick as a whip I replied, “Do I know you?”
I laughed and I laughed. I hopped, skipped and side-kicked in the air. She chased me and tried to hit me—but I saw her secretly laughing inside—it made me a most happy man.
I’m a selfless comic, and as I said, people really like me. And if it’s not because I’m so funny, it must be because of my humility.