Comedy, Creativity & Crisis

Comedy, Creativity & Crisis

The Beginning

At the beginning of 2020, I decided that I was going to make twelve resolutions (one per month) instead of one big resolution at the beginning of the year that ran the risk of fizzling out by January 3rd.

In January and February, I got a couple of good things done. Then Covid-19 struck and suddenly, like everyone else, I waited and wondered, ‘What was going to happen next?’

The world hit ‘pause’ and my yearly ‘things -to – do’ list turned into more of a personal survival guide.

After a few months though, something rather unexpected happened. Creativity kicked in. I probably should have panicked more but, instead, I took a deep breath and I started to write.

I started working again on jokes and writing projects that I had put off for years. 

There must have been something in the air because so many people that I knew felt the same way. They were writing. They were creating. They wanted to collaborate.

Caveman Brain

Since the beginning of time, creativity and stress seem to have gone hand in hand. 

When the cavemen heard an unknown noise outside of their cave, naturally their first reaction would have been fear.  However, when the dreaded monster turned out to be tiny creature instead, everybody probably laughed out of relief.

Research shows that when something is incongruous to our regular brain patterns, our reaction is sometimes laughter. 

When a punchline zigs instead of zags, we laugh!

Take my wife. Please. Hilarious. 

Sometimes we smile, sometimes we laugh hysterically, sometimes we cry AND laugh.

It’s like watching an episode of Ricky Gervais’ brilliant dramedy called After Life.

Half the time we don’t know if we are laughing or crying.

The Unknown 

When we face the unknown, we sometimes laugh. 

Covid-19 is unknown. We don’t have a cure.  Add that to global warming, pollution, protests, unemployment, Trump and never-ending Zoom calls and you’ve got a real comedy extravaganza (NOT). Over the past four months, I’ve had snickers, cry-laughs, belly laughs and laughs so maniacal that I’m surprised someone didn’t slap me across the face.

No, not everything is funny. In fact, right now, some things are pretty damn terrifying. 

But if we want to keep moving forward for ourselves and others, if we want to help, if we want to contribute, then we have to stay engaged. The best way of ensuring THAT happens is by keeping our right, bright, creative, brain happy. Yes, 2020, we’re mad as hell and we’re going to type, write, sing, dance, joke, paint and perform about it! 

I know I might not be the next Tina Fey, Carrie Fisher or Nora Ephron.

In fact, I’m probably a few lines away from ‘All work, no play makes Jude a dull girl’.

And that’s okay because I’ve always maintained that I would rather pee my pants laughing than pee my pants from fear. 

 

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