Apparently I Laugh at Other People’s Expense

I had too much caffeine this morning and proceeded to clean my entire house around 2 toddlers.  That is an act of magic.  Just getting clothes out of the dryer is an act of magic for me.

And not just “these days”.


I am not an ideal housekeeper.  But I consumed the caffeine and I cleaned and I THOUGHT.  I did a little introspection.  I rooted through my brain looking for a common thread in all the little things that tickle me.

I’m all over the place.

But the other day Siegfried did a belly-flop in the grass and his Frenemy Simon pointed and laughed his little head off.  He was admonished, but man, he and I have some things in common.


Growing up my dad was always a little hard of hearing (from shooting guns and listening to music with the side of his head pressed against the speaker.)  Anytime he wouldn’t hear what one of us was trying to say, someone would shout out “snakes!”  It killed me every time.  (It was all because of a deaf great uncle who did this…..)



What kind of person am I to laugh at my own dear hard-of-hearing father??


And heaven forbid someone actually hit the floor.  How do you not laugh at that? How???

When I worked a day-job at the furniture store, there was an upper level.  There were stairs. And there was the sweetest little Texas girl you can imagine that worked that area.  On busy days we wouldn’t see her at all.  But one day, as we all stood around the front counter, she appeared at the top of the stairs……

She was a busty girl with a thick drawl….


…and in the blink of an eye she was careening across the floor on her bosoms.

How do you not laugh at that? How???  She even ended up under a dining table!!!  The horror of trying to stifle it!!!!

I didn’t, of course.

(She was fine, by the way. Didn’t even phase her.)


I can’t play the game MADGAB.  You know, the one where you hold up a card and the other player has to sound out the words they see until they figure out the “real” phrase.  We played it with our best friends in Chicago.  The guy’s name was Captain America.  He was real quiet and mega-buff.  You had to take the guy seriously.

But then I got stuck holding up a card for him to read.  He had to say this out loud.


But because I was the one holding the answer, things looked a little different through my warped lens.

How am I supposed to compose myself in the face of that?


In high school I came across a geodesic dome constructed out of heavy duty cardboard. I taped it to my ceiling over the light fixture (of course).

My best friend Maggie was over.  She was a  reserved, preppy kind of girl (I’m drawn to people who are less…..weird than me)….(or more weird. One or the other.  Nothing in between. Nobody “equal” in weirdness.)

She was sitting on a chair in the very center of my room eating runts.

….when suddenly, after two years of being taped to the ceiling, the geodesic dome decides its time to fall off.

She had NO IDEA what was going on.  She thought my brother had snuck into the room and hit her over the head with something. Like a jousting stick.

Thankfully she came around and we clenched in silent fits while multi-colored Runt-drool fell out of our faces.

I love misspoken words. I love bad typos.  I need to take sensitivity classes.  Or “stifle it” classes……


  • I think I missed Texas girl flying down the stairs and ending up under a table but I certainly am laugh ing about it now. Shame on you for passing along the laughter at someone else’s expense.

    • She was SUCH a good sport. I had a whole new respect for her after that.

  • Haha! So funny. You’re not alone in this. My mother-in-law tumbled to the floor when a chair broke into pieces as she sat down. It’s TERRIBLE, but I literally guffawed….one of those that comes from that deep, dark, hidden place inside and escapes before you even have a chance to “stifle it.” No one else even giggled.

    • Oh you poor thing! That is so funny! Its a nightmare when it comes out and nobody else is joining in.

  • I too laugh at the misfortune of others. It’s why I am no longer allowed to view executions.

    • That’s a good enough reason to keep you out!

  • Oh my gosh…ha!

    My problem is a complete inability to separate myself from humiliation, even if it’s not mine. It’s why I can’t watch reality TV. It kills me. Even in movies, when the bad guy gets humiliated. Brought to justice? I love that. Shot, even? Doesn’t bother me. But humiliated? Totally ruins it for me.

    Of course, if it’s fairly minor humiliation and happens to someone I know, I don’t have a problem. Then it’s funny. Maybe my priorities are kind of skewed?

    • Can you laugh at your husband saying “me came house”?

      • Yes. Yes, I can. And did!

  • Ahhhh! I had totally forgotten about that thing falling on my head! And the confusion that followed! That was pretty funny.

    • It was hilarious! :)

  • I once saw a bird fly into a bus. It disappeared into a puff of feathers. Even as I type this, I am giggling as I think about the poor soul who was awakened by a THUMP! on the window only to see a smudge and a beak.

    • I watched a guy do that very same thing. Only he was walking. Trying to get into a Chinese restaurant via the patio. Didn’t see the sliding glass door. Nailed it! He was wearing glasses too so the whole restaurant looked up to see what the noise was. He face had continued it’s forward motion, even though his glasses had stopped. So there was a big greasy faceprint all around the space his glasses occupied.

    • I once saw a bird flying down the street, as in flying down the street as if it were a car. Middle of the right hand lane and everything. So I sped up a bit, thinking, “Let’s just give this little guy a scare.” And instead of flying left a bit, or right, or up, or even down, he started flapping those little wings like mad. And then I hit him and saw feathers coming up from the grill.

      I was surprised. I honestly didn’t think I was going to hit him. (Try going out and intentionally hitting a bird. You can’t.) Then I just started cracking up, so hard that I had to pull over. It struck me as so freaking funny that this bird was so stupid that it thought it had no options other than to outrace the car nipping on his proverbial heels.

      • Bird-slayer! I would have pulled over too! A friend of mine (huge animal lover) was on a first date with this girl. He was driving and saw a mcdonalds bag in the road. He tried to impress her by speeding up, crossing into the other lane and then nailing it. It was a kitten with a red bow around it’s neck…..

  • I remember Texas girl falling down the stairs, and I am sorry it was pretty darn funny. I am sure she would tell you the same thing. Awe good memories.

    • It was, wasn’t it! I miss her!

  • So America’s Funniet Videos and Wipeout are your favorite shows?

    Nice Mr. eBirdie, by the way.

    • Thanks! It totally looks like him, doesn’t it (the second drawing. Obviously).
      Yes I love AFV. Not the “teens doing crazy stuff” wipe-outs”. I like the “drunk grandma at a wedding” wipeouts.

  • I do the same thing. I wonder if it’s an evil streak.

    We were running across a friends yard once and my buddy jumped over a stump, only to catch a clothesline in the chest. The forward momentum flipped his entire body up over the lines and he got caught in them.

    I wanted to check and see if he was okay, but I was having trouble breathing I was laughing so hard.

    • Oh gosh! I would have paid money to see that! Hilarious!

  • This one had me belly-laughing. I think we all laugh at others’ expense sometimes. In fact it’s the cultural tension breaker in some parts of the world. I’ll never forget when Capt A’s big brother fell on his face (at about 15 months old) and our best friends from Mexico laughed their heads off. I was kinda offended until they explained themselves:)

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