A lot has been said about Shashi Tharoor and his tweet (for the story click here). If the folks in power did not find it funny, the least they could have done was keep silent instead of branding Tharoor as insensitive. I am sure he had no intention to hurt anyone. It was a spontaneous reply to a question. I personally found it funny, though I do think he should tweet less and work more.
A child they say laughs around 300 times a day. As he grows to an adult he laughs less, as few as 15 times a day. The Indian politician, not only stops laughing but loses his sense of humour.
I think more of our politicians could do with some laughter and cheer. It is ironical that Tharoor seems to have forgotten his earlier writings. Much before he joined the political scene, he wrote in The Hindu ( 2001), that as far as political humour is concerned, our national cupboard is bare. The Indian nationalist leaders and the politicians, he said, are a humourless lot; and if the incidence of wit and humor in national politics is a fair indication of the health of a democracy, India could use a good laugh.
Well, not everyone can be an Al Gore. He lost a closely fought election and one would think he would be very bitter person. But the former presidential candidate for a long time began his speeches with “Hello, my name is Al Gore, and I used to be the next president of the United States.” And it won him many admirers.
Humour, especially in public life or in general can help defuse a tense situation. One can even play safe by allowing the joke to be targeted at themselves, to ensure none are offended. Self-deprecation has its advantages. Psychologist Michael Cunningham says "Self-effacing humor isn't threatening because it points out that a someone is confident enough to risk looking silly." But a word of caution - Don’t poke fun at yourself simply so someone else defends the opposite. This will appear manipulative and narcissistic.
Laughter they say is good for health, and triggers release of endorphins, the natural painkillers and induces a sense of well being. As Grouch Marx is reported to have said ...yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I'm going to be happy in it
www.chrismadden.co.uk/wordpress/?p=33 - cartoon source