No Laughing Matter

All right, this isn’t funny. Yesterday I boldly proclaimed my belief that humans are the only “animals” that laugh.  Then I notice a link to an article about laughing chimpanzees.  And bonobos. Rats, too. Even dogs have “vocalizations” that can be deemed as laughter. And let’s not even mention hyenas.

How dare you laugh at me, Anna!

How dare you laugh at me, Anna!

 

The final straw came as I left my writing room yesterday and stepped out into the hall, only to be greeted by our double yellow-headed Amazon…laughing. Yes, laughing.

Of course, in the parrot’s case, it’s only mimicry. She has no idea what she’s laughing about, or talking about, or singing about, as the case may be. And now, having found dozens of links to dozens of studies about laughing animals, I must conclude that I don’t know what I’m talking about either. Of course, it’s not the first time.

 

I am a bit ticked off over it all, however. It was from the old devil I learned that animals don’t laugh. Yeah, right. Last time I believe anything you say, horned one.

Meanwhile, my life has suddenly become filled with chimps. Everywhere. I’ve been working with a new e-mail program… ba-da-boom, yep: MailCHIMP. I turn on the television, and you guessed it. CHIMPS, running all over Animal Planet. Books, magazines, commericals…you name it, and it’s got a chimpanzee in it.

Folks, take this as a warning. This, you see, is what happens if you invite the devil to come visit. Fortunately, I only entertain the fellow two weeks or so out of each year, and I trust that when he leaves, he will take all these chimpanzees with him.

Meanwhile, before I get started on my own busy day, I’ll visit a little with my long-tailed, pitchfork wielding guest and see what “monkey business” he has in mind for me today.

And for the record, I still don’t believe animals really laugh. They make sounds, but laughter is a little more than just another sound…don’t you think?

 

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