DAY 229: Laughing boisterously at comedy

17 Apr

I DON’T like to be a party pooper, but nothing irritates me more than mass laughter. It’s not my fault – I’ve been raised to view the general public as a proletarian mob with a lowbrow sense of humour.

It makes comedy nights a problem – flinching every two seconds and looking around crossly – but if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em, as they say.

I go along to Music, Mirth & Mayhem, part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, with my similarly stoic friend Clare, on a mission of guffawing loudly throughout.

To my surprise, once I’ve forced a few laughs to Dave Hughes (I nearly lose my stroke when he wanders into road tolls territory), it becomes easier and easier. For much of it I’m standing next to Chrissie, the gutsy, titian-haired publicist. She gasps, cackles and nudges me, loving it. Clare even raises a wry chuckle.

I watch a sourpuss a few rows ahead get her knickers in a twist by the people talking at the bar. That could be me! But it’s not. Yes, this is much better than burning with some imagined insult or falling into brooding silence as I calculate how many drinks I can have before I will have to ask myself to leave. You masses, you’re onto something.

Keeper? Sure. Will attempt a good sing-along soon.

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