I was driving in my car the other day when I started to smile. The smile was followed by a smirk, which transformed into a giggle, which morphed into an outright guffaw. I was not listening to Car Talk, and I hadn’t seen anything bizarre on the streets. I simply remembered something funny. Not just funny, though. It was one of those things that made me laugh uncontrollably when I first heard it and has the ability to make me laugh uncontrollably whenever I think of it. Naturally, it tends to pop into my head at moments when laughter is an inappropriate reaction.
Before we go any further, I have to tell you what it is, with the disclaimer that it probably won’t make you laugh uncontrollably. In fact, you probably won’t find it funny at all, not because it wasn’t funny, just because I can’t do it justice in writing. It was something David Letterman said on his show. He was describing the serene pastoral scene at his vacation home in Montana. It used to be, he said, that once in a while you’d see wildlife off in the distance. Now, because of construction and suburban sprawl, he said, “every morning I’m swattin’ deer off the porch.”
Something about the way he said it, and the visual of actually swatting a deer off the porch, like you would a fly, made me hysterical. Still does. The most inappropriate time this ever popped into my head was right before a company meeting, when my boss was talking about a similar pastoral scene at a vacation house. Throughout the entire meeting I had a stupid smile on my face and occasionally had to fight back tears.
After remembering this line, I tried to think of other things that have made me giggle without abandon over the years. The only thing I could come up with was a misheard song lyric from Dave Barry’s Book of Bad Songs. He was referring to the unintelligible first line of The Beach Boys’ Help Me Rhonda, which sounds a lot like, “Well since she put me down, there’s been owls puking in my bed.” Yup. I’m pretty sure that’s right.
I really wanted to pad this post out with a bunch of things I have found stupidly funny over the years. I have lots of things I can think of that make me laugh but can’t presently think of anything that triggers the hysterics. So I turn it over to the blogosphere at large and ask what it is that makes you laugh so hard you can barely even type the words…