I’ve always been odd, and this is no surprise to me. However, from time to time I AM surprised to find out that certain reactions or thoughts I have are actually rather common. So, a new little series here, Is It Just Me?, aims to have fun with that…
What kind of comedies do you enjoy? What makes you laugh? For me, it’s the absurd. The Jerk, the Marx Bros., that picture above… the things that make me laugh are generally a little off the wall. Sure, I love dry humor and other things can surprise me, but the things that tend to hit my funny bone the hardest border on the crazy. I was going to write about this last week, but after some fun had at the beginning of this week, I realized it all feeds into a much bigger idea…
I ♥ chaos.
This is nothing new. Before the big El Nino season in the 90’s, our roof was re-shingled. The shingles no longer reached all of the way to the gutter, though, so right outside of our front door the rain would pour hard from the corner and smash with a VERY loud noise into the cement. So, after getting tired of that sound and losing my mind one day, I decided to fix it. Like a madman, I laughed as I stood outside in a torrential downpour, banging away at a piece of metal to bridge the gap. That was "the day I defeated the Oh Nino".
Let’s skip ahead, to about 7 years ago. I put a pizza in the oven after work (yes, back when I still ate cheese), and I eagerly anticipated eating the heck out of it. When it came time to open the oven, however, the handle broke off in my hand. So, while my pizza burned to a crisp inside, I spent the next hour smashing my way into the oven. That was "the day I defeated the oven".
These kinds of things have always excited me, whether it’s an overly hectic and understaffed day at work, or the rebellious joy of challenging authority – I have fun in the midst of chaos.
What spawned the whole thing was the fun that came this week with helping a friend change the spark plugs in her car. We fought with stubborn bolts, we figured out how things worked, and when a problem later presented itself… we had to face it. Her car was stuck in my driveway, so I had to take her to work. I then had to find some new bolts (don’t ask), and spent the rest of my evening getting some broken ones out of the engine (I said don’t ask). We spent most of the next day working on it, as well, and by the end we’d mutually lost our minds (I’ve never screwed and unscrewed so much in entire life)… but I enjoyed the heck out of it.
There’s a camaraderie to it, I suppose, as well as a challenge that can’t be avoided… but I’m still unsure what other elements factor into my enjoyment of situations like this. If you’ve never seen me in those moments, you’ll not know what I’m talking about, but I get a wide-eyed look of mad excitement on my face. Usually, I’m with someone who is frustrated, unhappy, tired, or whatever else… and I see that the situation calls for positive encouragement, so I suppose I also enjoy playing that part.
It’s all quite ironic, I think, considering how calm and easy-going of a guy I am… but when the situation requires it (and that’s part of the fun… that it HAS to be done), I come alive and revel in the madness of uncertainty, hard and repetitive work, and challenge. It’s almost sadistic. It can’t just be the excitement of having to face a challenge, though, because my enjoyment of absurd comedy has nothing to do with being challenged. That’s the interesting part, to me. I can come to no other conclusion than the fact that, very simply, I just love chaos. So now that I’ve told you MY story, I’d love to hear how you feel on the matter.
Do you love chaos… or is it just me?