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Are You Serious?

“What is Funny about us is precisely that we take ourselves too seriously.” – Reinhold Niebuhr

“Let us not take ourselves too seriously. None of us have a monopoly on wisdom.” – Queen Elizabeth II

When I was a kid, one of our favorite Family past times was for my father to set up the slide projector. (the one with the round tray that would click noisily through the slides) Then, my mother, father, sister and I would laugh heartily at the old family pictures. We would giggle at the bouffant hairdos, the bad Toni perms, the funny glasses and even us kids would laugh at ourselves, with our pigtails and our bell-bottomed gauchos. Many of these pictures were just a decade old and yet, they were outdated enough, for us to find them to be laugh-out-loud hilarious. What’s even funnier, is that we were watching these slides in the 1980s with our enormous hair and shellacked bangs, in our mauve and teal-colored family room.

I have been binge watching The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. My youngest son has watched a couple of the episodes with me and a few times he has commented on the fact that he can’t believe some of the ways that they talk on the show, or what they do and wear, really happened. He finds it to be ridiculous. The show takes place in the late 1950s. Most of us “second halfers” in adulting, have parents who were kids and young adults in the 1950s. Yet when we watch shows like Maisel and Madmen, they seem otherworldly . . . from a time long, long ago.

Bottom line is that almost everything that we consider stylish, tried and true, and important and crucial right now, is likely to seem funny, trite, silly and sometimes, even impossible to understand, in the very near future. Everything that is weighing heavy on our hearts right now, is more than likely to work itself out, to the point that we will eventually have a hard time remembering what had upset us so much. And this cycle happens many, many times over, just in our lifetimes. Why would we take anything too seriously, when we fully understand that this cycle happens, again and again?

“I don’t believe in being serious about anything. I think life is too serious to be taken seriously.” – Ray Bradbury

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Are You Serious?


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