10 May 2011

Nantucket, What’s So Funny?

I bet there isn’t a mom or dad alive who can’t relate to the photo above.  Every family has a “class clown.”  Somehow I managed to get 4 of them…the one in the photo being King Clown (my son, Mr Funny Guy).  When the kids were little I spent a lot of hours and energy trying to squelch the clown.  I wanted just one family photo where we all looked…well… normal.

Now that the kids are grown and I have 20/20 hindsight, I wish I’d spent more time and energy fostering those clowns – providing them outlets and opportunities to bring the house down with their funny antics and comedy routines.  All my kids are innately wired to be funny…it’s in their DNA.  Now, years later, these silly photos are some of my favorites.  Perhaps the most delightful element in the photo is his little sister staring up at him with absolute adoration on her face.   My daughter always wanted to grow up and be even half as funny as her big brothers.  She’s getting close.  She’s pursuing an acting career in college and doing open-mic improv whenever she gets a chance.  Being funny and making people laugh is her passion and if she has her way will someday be her career.  What a great job – making people laugh.

Laughter truly is good for our physical bodies and refreshment for our souls.  It lightens our load, makes us happy and reminds us not to take the stresses of life too serious.  I have friends who wrote a marriage book and listed laughter as one of the most important elements of a successful marriage…even devising an acronym for LAUGHS to remind couples to keep the fun alive.  I think laughter is also a lifesaver in the workplace.  My colleagues make me laugh every single day; sometimes on purpose with a prank or funny story and sometimes unwittingly by something they say or do. Real Estate may be no laughing matter, but the determination to keep our attitudes light, even when circumstances are tense, creates a really fun work environment.

Milton Berle once said “Laugher is an instant vacation.”  Never is that more true than on Nantucket.  I have never attended a Nantucket dinner party, beach barbeque or social event that wasn’t filled with laughter. People here genuinely know how to have fun and enjoy more than a few good laughs.  Island organizations have formed to embrace and promote comedy in our lives.  Nantucket Improv is on the stage at the Methodist Church every Sunday night at 8:30 p.m. from June to October and features local funny guys and gals.  The Nantucket Comedy Festival is July 28-July 30 and will offer 3 days of hilarious entertainment for young and old.  Proceeds will benefit ProjACK Comedy, the first stand-up comedy curriculum developed for high schools, currently being utilized at NHS and the New School.

As you organize your Nantucket agenda this summer, plan to take advantage of the wide variety of opportunities to laugh until your sides split.  Attend one of the comedy events, enjoy a funny theater presentation or simply invite a few class clowns to dinner and say “Hey Nantucket, what’s so funny?”


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