Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Just so you don't think I spend every day laughing and interviewing famous folks, today I spent a full day working for Habitat for Humanity. I don't have many building skills, but they always find something for me to do. Today we were working on rehabing an older home and I spent the morning scrapping away some excess foam insulation installed by the previous day's volunteers. Then as additional windows were installed, I got my turn at pumping in some yellow foam that tomorrow's crew will need to cut down to size. Boy, that stuff just explodes sometimes! I also did some caulking. The donated caulk was old,thick and hard to apply. I had balance the caulk gun on my shoulder and use two hands to pull the trigger. Sometimes it's good for me to spend a day really working instead of just laughing in an aisle seat!

All afternoon I pulled nails from some oak trim that was original to the house and will be reinstalled after the new wallboard is up. Talk about hard work. I was working in a cellar with two other women, Tracy and Angela, volunteers from Americorps. Some of those nails were so stubborn that we would exclaim Amen when one would finally come out. We had a regular Amen chorus going there. And we would laugh. Guess I just can't help it.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Funny furry friend

I'll never lack for reason to laugh as long as Cloudy is around. He likes to attack the carpets and then "hide" in the space underneath.
It's a good thing I can find humor at home. I went to see a movie today that wasn't very funny: Inside Job. It's a documentary about the 2008 financial crash. What I hated about the movie is it really doesn't offer many options. The banks are crooked. Wall Street is crooked. But they control everything. We changed presidents but the Federal Reserve and Secretary of the Treasury are part of the some crowd that got us in this mess. Even the professors are on the take. Money really is the root of all evil. Good thing I don't have much.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Laughing missionaries

I have it easy. I laugh because someone...usually lots of someones...is trying very hard to be funny. They have witty lines. They've practiced comic timing. And they put enthusiasm into it. So I don't have to think about it. I just laugh.

But did you know there are people who've made laughing a mission? Not comedians, but people like The Levity Project that go into crowded places like Grand Central Station and just start laughing, counting on the sheer contagion...and maybe a sign or two... to get everybody else laughing. And it works! A whole different meaning of Laughing for a Living.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Finding a rhythm

Taking a break in between Thanksgiving yesterday in St. Louis with my Mom and family and a repeat performance tomorrow at Ryan and Angy's house. It will be their first time hosting the event. The first of many, I hope.

Driving back today, I've been listening to Anna Quinlen's "Blessings," an interesting story but agonizingly slow in the telling. Every other sentence is a flashback. I spoke to Quinlen a few years back when she wrote "Black and Blue," a book about domestic violence. That book takes place in Florida and one of the most interesting things I gleaned from talking to Quinlen is that she simply fantasized the details about the location. Although she had been a reporter for the New York Times, she didn't feel any need to visit Florida in order to write about Florida. The approach seemed to work fine in "Black and Blue" because it was more about the people than the place. "Blessings" takes place in upstate New York, an area Quinlen is familiar with. The people and the class structure the story explores are very interesting, even though I find her style on this particular book frustrating. I'm more action oriented.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Still laughing

There's something sorta poetic about the fact that my last post was at the end of February when we were getting ready to leave Florida and return to the north and now I reconnect with my blog just two weeks before we are to return to Florida for another winter. So much has changed. The book I was working on last year, has come to be. In fact I just received a shipment today for next week's book signing at Civic Theatre. But I'm still making a living laughing. Last night I was covering "Legally Blonde" which may be in legal limits for hair color but it's way over the speed limit -- what an energetic show. And fun too. I got my share of laughs.