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Laughter is Good Medicine

Laughter is Good Medicine

December 13, 2016

With the rising cost of healthcare, everyone should be looking for ways to save money without seeing the doctor. One sure fire low budget way to better health is to laugh more. It is good for the heart, fights depression and even burns calories.

Everyone likes a good joke and no one knows more Jewish jokes than Michael Krasny, a public radio host and professor of English, who just published a wonderful treasury of great Jewish humor tiled appropriately “Let the Be Laughter.” He remembered his first successful joke that he told to his grumpy teacher in the tenth grade. It goes like this. Michael asked his teacher “What’s the fastest thing on water?” Then answered his own question: “A jew in a canoe on the Suez Canal.” The wise crack caused his teacher to laugh so hard that he had to hold on to the edge of his desk. We all agree that jokes are best told and that joke didn’t quite make me laugh but here’s one about a Jewish grandmother that made me smile.

A Jewish grandmother takes her handsome young grandson to the beach. The boy is playing too close to the incoming waves and unexpectedly gets knocked down by a powerful one and gets washed out into the ocean. The Jewish grandmother, unable to swim herself, screams in terror that her grandson is drowning, pleading for someone to save him and praying to G-d for help. As if G-d hears her anguished cries, a young muscular lifeguard appears out of no where and dives into the water. She, meanwhile, is still very distraught, terrified that the child has been underwater for too long to ever survive. The lifeguard brings the blue-looking little boy to shore and begins to administer mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on him while the grandmother continues to pray. Soon water spurts from the boy’s mouth and he is breathing. The lifeguard reassures the grandmother that her grandson is going to be okay.  Where upon the old lady nods, unclasps her hands from the prayer position, and says to the lifeguard, with a bit of edge in her voice, “HE HAD A HAT.

Another Jewish mother tells the time that she buys her adult son two brand new ties for his birthday. Later in the evening the two meet for dinner and the son proudly is wearing one of his new ties. His mother takes one look at him and says, “What? you didn’t like the other one?”