Two guys walked into a bar, no wait, it’s a priest and a rabbi entered a bar, um, no that’s a cop and a monkey are in a car and the monkey says, um…
OK, I can’t remember jokes for the life of me. Five minutes after the punch line I would be hard pressed to retell the joke to someone else, and if I did remember how it went I would not be able to deliver it right. Guess I am just not a funny gal. Sarcastic, yes, and witty at times, but not funny. Some people are born with the gift. My sister’s second husband could have made millions as a stand up comedian. He was, hand’s down, the funniest person I have ever known. Watching a B-movie with him was a hysterical experience! He had the gift. His son, my nephew, inherited that gift and is almost as funny as his dad.
One thing I learned hanging around with the jokesters of our family is not only will you have a great time, but everyone becomes funny! It is like the funny-aura oozes out and infects those surrounding until we are all bursting with witticism and wisecracks. Humor feeds off of laughter and grows stronger and more potent. This is an important lesson for me when it comes to my writing. Since I am not inherently a funny gal, I could probably never write a farce or slapstick novel. But, I do understand the natural humor that arises in everyday life among people who know each other well, especially if one has the gift. I also know how important humor is in stressful situations after working for decades in the ICU. It is this normal, innate humor that I inject into my novels. Of course it helps that I have created a couple of characters who remind me a bit of my brother-in-law!
An excerpt from Mr. and Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy—
“My husband claims to be as poor a proficient on the violin, yet now I begin to speculate he may not have been totally forthright. How would you evaluate his skills, Colonel, as one artist assessing the other?”
Richard smugly appraised his faintly frowning cousin. “Ah, Mrs. Darcy, you place before me an interesting dilemma. If I judge his talents paltry, then we shall all take pity and not wish to embarrass him by prevailing upon him to play, thus depriving us entertainment, but he shall thank me and be in my debt. If, however, I laud his gift, extolling the unsurpassed skill he wields, then all shall beseech him to grace us with a tune to our delight but I shall likely be soundly pummeled once alone.”
They all laughed. Mr. Lathrop chimed in with his soft voice, “I shall save you, Colonel. Darcy has not seen me for many months so would not likely horsewhip me.”
“Do not be too confident, Lathrop,” Darcy interrupted with a growl.
Undeterred, Mr. Lathrop continued with a grin, “Darcy often played at Cambridge and is quite good, although he abhors performing for crowds. Except for that one time, remember, Darcy?”
All eyes were on Darcy, brows raised in question. Richard stifled a chuckle and Mr. Lathrop was grinning broadly.
“This is blackmail, old friend.” Darcy said, trying not to smile.
Mr. Lathrop spread his hands innocently, “Simply a reminder of what is possible with the appropriate … influences.”
“What manner of influences, Mr. Darcy, pray tell?” asked Mrs. Lathrop with a dimpled smile. All were staring at Darcy with varying degrees of humor with the exception of Georgiana who was frankly baffled.
Excerpt from Loving Mr. Darcy starring my favorite fellow, Dr. George Darcy—
He shrugged. “Then why are you not riding your horse?”
Darcy stopped abruptly with a glare. “Because you, Doctor Darcy, ordered me not to until you examined me and gave the approval.”
George arched both brows in surprise. “Did I really say that?”
“Yes, you did,” Darcy said through gritted teeth.
“Hmmm, how odd.” George was stroking his chin in perplexity. “Although it does sound like something I would say, is that not so, Raja?”
“Yes, it does sound like you, George,” Dr. Penaflor was grinning, sparkling teeth flashing.
“If you declare it so, William, then I believe you. What I should have said is that you may resume all normal activities once no further pain is felt.” He clapped Darcy on the shoulder, the left one, with a brilliant smile. “How is that? Happy now?”
Darcy was staring at him open mouthed. With a final glare and shake of his head, he pivoted and stomped into the parlor. George met Lizzy’s glittering eyes, winking broadly and grinning as he gallantly offered an arm.
Excerpt from My Dearest Mr. Darcy starring Dr. Darcy once again, but also showing humor in a stressful situation—
She curtsyed and left, passing George Darcy in the sitting room. He approached with casual strides, tea cup in one hand and muffin in the other, dressed in a flowing garment of canary yellow with green edging. “I was informed that babies are birthing hereabouts? Elizabeth! You are still pregnant!” He stopped abruptly on the threshold, feigning shock.
“Yes, Uncle, we thought we would wait for you. Now that you have arrived, perhaps you can work your magic and speed the process along?”
“Alas, my dear niece, magic does not reside in these hands. Only staggering expertise and superior knowledge. William, you do intend on dressing and shaving? Your baby’s eyesight will suffer if greeted by such a frightful vision.”
“And your brash appearance is benign?” Elizabeth interjected.
“Babies love bright colors. Stimulates the retina.” He had crossed to the fireside chair positioned across from Lizzy, sitting and extending long legs nonchalantly as he bit into the muffin.
Yes, I do love that man! Now, perhaps you can share some of your favorite humorous bits? Make us laugh, make us laugh, make us laugh!