Ladies and gentlemen! Boys and girls of all ages! Come one, come all! Step into the magnificent and marvelous tent of wonders and see the most amazing oddities from the four corners of the globe! Come wonder at the bearded lady, a real live mermaid and Nessie the Loch Ness Monster! And never before seen elsewhere, is this truly mind-boggling atrocity: it looks like a normal girl, it feels like a normal girl, it even sounds and tastes like a normal girl. But folks this is the Giggler01, truly a freak of nature because (if you can believe it) she was born without a sense of humor.
Now this isn't simply a case of "I will never be a stand-up comedian" because I was never the class clown. No, the situation is even worse: I don't even laugh at other people's jokes. That's right: when other people are saying how much they love Adam Sandler, how Will Ferrell makes the most hilarious movies or how "Family Guy" is their favorite show because they can quote all of Stewie's one-line zingers, I'm the buzzkill who says, "Really? But they're just not funny!" Of course, then my friends look at me like I've sprouted an extra set of eyes of my forehead. One of my best friends asks me at least once a week, "What is wrong with you? How can you not laugh at that!?"
So I guess that explains why everyone else is scouring WebMD and Medline to find out whether they have diabetes, or cancer or Ebola, while I'm furiously trying to figure whether it's possible to be born without a single funny bone in your entire body. And lo and behold, I find that the Internet, in its infinite wisdom, agrees wholeheartedly that it is possible to be born without a sense of humor and in fact uses this deficiency as some sort of insult! I've even come across an entire article about how the people with no sense of humor aren't the ones who suffer, but rather they make life miserable for everybody else.
I object! I mean, I get it: no one wants to be friends with Debbie Downer, but I don't think the fact that I I don't find things funny means I'm objectionable. I don't get offended easily. I don't tell other people that they shouldn't find things funny. I smile lots and I sometimes just burst out into song. Actually, that makes me sound crazy, and I'm not insane - at least, I don't think so.
It's just that these things don't make me laugh and I just don't understand why they're funny. Besides, I try not to make life miserable for others and so I've spent hours practicing my fake laugh, because one day I'll fake it until I make it. For now, I am the master of feigning merriment. I always laugh when other people laugh so that they don't start to question whether I'm some sort of heartless zombie from planet Mars. But in truth, I just feel lonelier than ever: have you have sat through a movie where everyone else is laughing their pants off and you're just sitting there stone cold and trying to remember all of the chores you have to do this week? If you're never done it, then let me tell you: it's the WORST.
After all, people are always looking for friends who are happy, healthy, smart, supportive and funny. By those criteria I'm close to perfection, but it's always that last adjective that presents itself as an insurmountable stumbling block. Besides if other people didn't have a problem with me being so unfunny, I wouldn't either, but apparently this is a big deal. How come people aren't looking for someone who is fairly serious and responsible?
I often wish I could wake up one morning and have the punch line slap me in the face. I'm getting rather desperate, in fact and I'm prepared to offer a $1 million reward for the person who finds and returns my funny bone. For that kind of money, I even have this dream that someday I'll be able to hire Ben Stiller to explain why things are funny, as if humor is something you can teach. Other days, I have nightmares where Heath Ledger shows up, dressed like the Joker and asks, "Why so serious?" I'm terrified that one day the Joker will turn up, except I won't be dreaming . . . Maybe I just need to stop worrying about ridiculous things like that because they will never happen, but I don't know how to forget about worrying, either. Now I'm just worrying about worrying! Maybe I should worry about something worthwhile instead, like why the chicken crossed the road.