Blazing Saddles - It's OK to be Human
Unlike many of my blogs about subjects that have a spiritual tie-in, tonight I wanted to share a bit about my past that I look back on with both embarrassment and with a laugh. So, for those sensitive to certain types of humor, you can stop reading now. What would that be? You may ask.
Well, during my early years, as you may have read about in earlier posts, I had a number of parental changes, crossed eyes, and an overall insecurity from nearly everything. To compensate, one of the things I learned to do at around five was to make humorous ‘bodily function’ noises; i.e. fart noises.
Yes, I was the class clown because I became very proficient at making the loudest, most obnoxious fart noises around! I took a few trips to the principle’s office because of it too. Not only that, I drove my parents, grandparents, and family crazy.
Of course, it didn’t help that both of my grandfather’s thought it would be great to teach me the ‘pull my finger’ joke too. In fact, at my grandparent’s home on my mother’s side, gas jokes were very common.
On many a trip to the city on Saturday nights with them we had to open the windows wide open to prevent from passing out. There was no air conditioning back then, so, when one ripped it stayed around for a while…
When we arrived in the city (Kalamazoo), we always stopped at K-Mart to get Grandma’s sewing supplies. Grandpa would follow her around while she pushed the cart. We always knew where he was because we could look down the isle and see the guy shaking his leg to ‘air things out’. There weren’t many people behind them after that!
Mel Brook’s movies were big hits then. One of the biggest was “Blazing Saddles”. Mel had a way of mocking life in a dumb, yet funny way. I’ll never forget watching the movie for the first time when they came to the scene where they all sat around the fire eating beans. I must have laughed for an hour. Still, today I laugh out loud watching it.
It’s not that I go around the house asking the Mrs. to pull my finger every day. No, I try to be good about it (mostly). I remember a story my mother would tell me about my grandparents how, when they were first married, Grandpa was too embarrassed to relieve gas in front of Grandma, so he would jump out of the chair and run outside. Now, that’s manners! Of course, that all changed with marriage as my story about K-Mart shows.
I know it’s not a topic that people like to talk about in public, but I also know that everyone has to deal with it. In college, I was the theology student who liked to get my more ‘spiritual’ classmates upset by bringing up the point that, yes, Jesus farted too. In fact, He and the disciples probably had some really ‘holy laughs’ around their camp fires!
I guess, the point of telling these stories is just to say that we’re all human. We all, including Jesus, have to deal with the biological side effects of certain types of food. It helps me stay humble, in a way, to keep that in mind. Just about the time I start feeling a little too good about myself, one might slip in public and bring me right back down to Earth.
It’s OK to laugh at ourselves. Of course, I know there are such things as manners and being polite. I’m just saying, life’s too short to take ourselves too seriously. Not that we need to go to the store and ask people to pull our finger (that’s only for the grandson!).
So, this weekend, here’s to letting our hair down a bit, putting our feet up, and just being real for a while. And, here’s to those days when I had to learn the hard way not to be too real, yet also to be able to laugh a little at myself. I’ll leave you with the clip I was speaking about from the movie, “Blazing Saddles” to put on replay when you feel a little down…
Have a blessed weekend my friends!
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