LM560 Hound from Hell

LM, Episode 560, 6/13/21

We’ve been in our place in Cincinnati for three weeks and our cat, Mr. B, seems to have adapted fairly well.  After his morning treats, he goes upstairs like he’s going to a job.  He spends his days sleeping among the maize of boxes that have yet to be unpacked.  In the evening he returns down stairs to snuggle in bed with us as we watch television.

Just the other day he was saying, “This place sucks, but at least there aren’t any puppies.”  The next day Keith and Kate brought their two dogs over for us to watch while they went on a much needed vacation.  Mr. B’s world came crashing down.  He hid for two days among the upstairs boxes, not coming out or even making a sound when we rattled the treat bag.  The only way we knew he was still alive is the empty food bowl we’d find every morning.

Now, when he comes down from upstairs, he stops half way to check if the, “hounds of hell,” are here.  He says they’re loud, they smell to kingdom come, and they need to stay at Baskerville or wherever they came from..  Fortunately, there are kitty treats to sooth what ails you.

Always remember laughter matters.

LM559 Saturday Morning Live

LM, Episode 559, 6/12/21, Saturday Morning Live

LM558 Good To Be Back

LM, Episode 558, 6/11/21

I did my first in person, shows last weekend.  Like I expected, the first 20 minutes my timing wasn’t great, but then I started finding my rhythm and by the time I got to my final 30 minutes, I felt like my old self.

I really enjoyed being in front of an audience and chatting with them.  There was a couple who had six children.  As you’d expect, the wife was in control of what had to be a chaotic life.  She rattled off each of the kid’;s ages without hesitance.  The husband looked like he could use a hug.  He even seemed unsure how many children they had.  “We have six, really?”

Which reminded me of Twyla’s dad.  Twyla and her two brothers would ride in the bed of his pickup, like they’re migrant, farm workers, and twice he got home with just two.  Walking in like there wasn’t anything wrong, Twyla’s mom would remind him they had three kids.  He’d get in the truck and retrace his route to find her brother, Dana, who’d bounced out of the truck.  It is a miracle those three survived their childhood. 

Tomorrow I do my first in person keynote in over a year for the Springfield, IL Area Agency on Aging’s Annual Caregiver Conference.  If you or your organization are looking for an informative keynote of reducing stress that is filled with laughs, visit my website at kentraderspeaks.com.  Have a great weekend and always remember laughter matters.

LM557 Humor and Pain

LM, Episode 557, 6/10/21

When I told my comedian friend, Marian Kelly, the Mennonite story from yesterday, she said when she was first doing open mic nights, she followed a black comedian named Andre Kelly and opened with, “Andre and I are related. My family owned his.”  Marian said the only people who laughed were the comics in the back of the room.

The following week, they made sure Andre followed Marian and his opening line was, “Marian and I are related.  Her family owned mine.”  This brought down the house.  Marian and I agree that it was funny when Andre did it because he was poking fun at a painful truth.  

Humor is a way of dealing with painful issues and may be the heart of why laughter matters.

LM556 It’s a Valid Question

LM, Episode 556, 6/9/21, It’s a Valid Question

When my friend, Jeff, and I were on a multiday, bike ride a few years ago, he wanted to start riding at the ungodly hour of 8.30 am.  On Sunday, as we got on our bikes, he says, “This is the exact time every Sunday when my wife and I debate if we should go to church or do the crossword.”

I go, “At this time every Sunday, Twyla and I have two more hours of sleep before we wake up and say, ‘Damn, we missed church again.’”

You see, Twyla and I are both heathens.  Actually, she’s a heathen and I’m easily lured.

After shows this weekend, we woke up in a hotel at 9 so I could meet Jeff to bike.  Walking through the lobby we see a Mennonite family with a bunch of children and one of them is black.  I whispered to Twyla, “Do you think they know slavery is illegal?”

Following her reprimand, I pointed out it was a valid question because they don’t watch TV or listen to the radio, maybe they hadn’t heard the news.

During my ride with Jeff, I mentioned this.  Jeff tells me they routinely adopt orphaned or abandoned children of different races. Wow, that made me have a whole new respect for them as this seems like something Jesus would do.  I still don’t feel bad about the joke.  As Dave Chappell observes, we often say mean things, not because they’re mean, but because they are funny and Elivs Costello says it’s always something cruel that laughter drowns. And you know how much laughter matters.