Laughing away our fear, worry

Published 9:10am Friday, August 26, 2011

On Tuesday the ground shook in Virginia and was felt from Canada to Georgia.
While we didn’t feel it here at the paper, we did receive calls from concerned readers and our reporter, Leah Justice.
My 5-year-old granddaughter, Malia, who lives in Virginia about 60 miles south of the epicenter, was quite fascinated that the ground could move.
She enthusiastically described it to me: “The whole kitchen floor moved, Nana, the WHOLE kitchen floor and on Saturday the WHOLE house is going to blow away.”
Her sweet little voice filled with so much emotion it made me chuckle at first, but then I realized she was really quite frightened.
It’s often human nature to laugh and joke at that which frightens us; it eases the tension and the worry. I laughed with relief that my family was safe and my worries were unfounded.
Jokes on Facebook and in email about how we survived the East Coast Quake are abundant.
One joke depicts a picture of a plastic picnic table with four plastic chairs surrounding it, one of the chairs is toppled over and the caption reads – “East Coast Earth Quake WE WILL REBUILD!”
Considering what could have been a catastrophe I’m glad we can laugh and make jokes.
This weekend our eyes will be on the weather, watching for hurricane Irene and the direction she will decide to take.
Preparations are under way all up and down the East Coast as this could be a big one.
Come Monday I’m hoping that we are laughing at the hurricane that wasn’t, and the house that didn’t blow away.

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