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Funny bones and status updates

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be

laughter and sharing of pleasures. For in the

dew of little things the heart finds its morning

and is refreshed.” ~ Kahlil Gibran

I get laughs with a little help from my friends — Facebook friends, that is. Oh, I have friends other than Facebook friends who make me laugh in “real time,” but today I’m addressing why I get a kick out of Facebook communication.

Hubby G-Man doesn’t understand the attraction of an online social network, but as one of those who enjoy the banter, I admit my addiction. I usually check in several times a day if I’m around the house, sending birthday and anniversary congrats, briefly posting something supportive if one of my buddies has lost a pet or a favorite schefflera, posting pictures every now and then or typing an announcement about a local art exhibit or some such goings-on. That’s about it — I rarely take time to post a “status update” but enjoy scanning those comments from others.

What’s a status update? There’s a comment box at the top of the Facebook page that gives folks a chance to post an update (venting or sharing), with remarks like “I have strange red bites all over my back. What could that be?” So then all the woman’s friends can weigh in with what in heaven’s name has probably been nibbling all over her shoulder blades. Helpful, yes?

Or, every now and then, “friends” will want everybody to know where they are, like, “Erika is sitting in the parking lot at the grocery store, waiting for George Jones to quit singing ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today’ … afterwards she’ll go in to stock up on pork chops and chemically altered grapes.”

Honest, I don’t care to share personal stuff like that. My affection for Facebook is due to the funny remarks of others that make me chuckle.

OK, I know non-Facebook users aren’t convinced there’s any value at all to these exchanges. What’s the point? The point is that I’m easily amused and my funny bone gets tickled.

For example, consider these “status updates” I’ve collected over the past week.

A friend wrote: “I just read somewhere that stress makes you smarter. If that’s true, I should be splitting an atom in my kitchen sink sometime later today.”

And another: “Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Ohhhh, yes! Just found some chocolate in the house!”

I loved this one: “If women ruled the world there wouldn’t be any wars — just a bunch of pouting countries not speaking to each other.”

And this: “Ever have one of those mornings when the birds are singing and you feel like whistling all the way to work? Well, I ain’t Snow White and it ain’t one of those mornings.”

Who wouldn’t give a thumbs up to this? “Thought for the day ~ If heat makes things expand, I don’t have a weight problem. I’m just HOT.”

The sarcastic insults are funny, too. We could all use these from time to time. “Hey, did you lose your nose? Why? Because I happened to have found it in my business.” And this: “Why don’t you slip into something nice like . . . oh, I don’t know . . . unconsciousness?”

Then there are those status updates that make fun of computer illiterates like me. Example: “So yesterday my friend texts me and asked, ‘What does IDK mean?’ So I said, ‘I. Don’t. Know.’ And my friend texts me back and said, ‘OMG, how can we find out? Nobody knows!’”

So, there you are. Serious discussions take place on Facebook also, but the humor is what keeps me going back.

Mark Twain wrote in The Mysterious Stranger, that “humanity has unquestionably one really effective weapon — laughter. Power, money, persuasion, supplication, persecution — these can lift at a colossal humbug, push it a little, weaken it a little, century by century, but only laughter can blow it to rags and atoms at a blast. Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.”

Even in the most difficult times, folks, let’s remember to laugh a lot. Doctor’s orders.

(Write: bethjacks@hotmail.com)