“Laugh, and the world laughs with you… weep, and you weep alone”

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I was researching this statement for a very simply reason – I wanted to know its origin, but even my searches of the Internet could not provide me with an answer! It is also written as…“Cry and you cry alone”.

However, I am not a weeper or a cryer; never have been. I think this was beaten out of me during my youth which was spent in boarding (live in) schools – boys only!

No weeping or crying but, alone at just 8 years old and accompanied by a very bad stutter and a small teddybear, I am sure a great deal of snivelling went on.

Now, laughter for me is like the air we breathe. On second thoughts that is unfair on laughter because “the air we breathe” has become almost toxic, and so what does this say about laughter?

Laugh at a good joke, most of which we now get via Email or WhatsApp, laugh at someone else or just laugh at yourself. I find I laugh at myself with great frequency and this can only mean that either I am a hilarious person or it is simply very easy to make me laugh.

The truth? I have no idea at all!!

Nervous laughter is very painful and there is no real humor attached.

Slapstick funny can be a good laugh but this must be most succulently delivered.

Sarcastic humor provides for a brief moment of humor but far too often someone is paying the price for this and that is “not funny”.

Dirty laughter is definitely “out” but suggestive humor still has legs…

You must, if still reading, think I have “lost it”, “gone off to mars”, “inhaled too much glue”, but honestly it is none of these and I am simply trying to highlight something we need so much more of – laughter. No, I do not need any more Donald jokes…

How many people do you know who take themselves far too seriously? Yes, you can name them and so can I. Laughter is so healthy and releases special enzymes which are the true “fountain of youth”. Just try laughing on the Metro and see what a positive impact you can have on your fellow travelers.

You must know someone who laughs at his or her own joke and actually starts laughing at the thought of the story about to be told. They giggle as they set about telling the tale and I, for one, am laughing long before anything funny has been said; this is just the sheer joy of being “free to laugh”; it is contagious.

You don’t have to be in a special place where laughter is allowed (like a smokers den) to let rip at something which, perhaps, only you understand. An example; the ridiculous beauty of the Andes covered with snow on one of those exceptional mornings when the visibility is perfect. It is so perfect you simply have to laugh out loud.

Weep and you weep alone….

We ask people all the time. “How are you?” and the only response we really want is “Great, and you?” But what happens if instead they start to tell you all the problems they have? You want to move quickly to one side and then slide off into the shadows! Well, most of the time…

What do you weep at? A homeless person sleeping on the sidewalk? A young child in pain? An overdraft you can’t pay off? Your Project being rejected by the bank? The frustration of not being understood or of being “found out”…? Weeping or crying is very personal and very “inward looking” which is why you are on your own, even if someone tries to comfort you.

But laughter is a public display of happiness and joy and “isn’t life great”!! You can (I can’t) weep silently but you laugh to a crowd and to the whole world.

So, go out and find laughter, share laughter, be laughter and you will be happier than you ever imagined. Even in pain and suffering there is humor and laughter. Yes, laughter is everywhere if you look for it – especially at work!!

Laugh, and the whole world laughs with you… Weep, and you weep alone.

I know.

Santiago Eneldo
(santiagoeneldo@yahoo.com)

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