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Feel Good Friday, March 8, 2013

I’m a bit of an extremist. At times I have been known to proclaim that anything worth doing is worth overdoing. I’m not sure that applies to exercise. I have also written, on numerous occasions, a smile is a wonderful, contagious action that can return rewards in many, and often, unexpected ways. Extremist that I am, I believe one could extrapolate that if a smile is good, a laugh is better. Right?

Wrong. It seems that in New York, home to more reasonable people than I ever want to know, a man has been ticketed by the police, and faces jail time, for laughing too loud; the charge… disturbing the peace.

Unfortunately, this story gets even uglier. You’re probably wondering, about now, how a story dealing with smiles and laughter can get ugly. Well read on, my friend.

It seems that Robert Schiavelli, of Long Island, has a neurological impairment and it causes frequent seizures. His next door neighbor, Dan O’Hanion, mocks, ridicules and calls him a retard, so he tries to laugh it off. Schiavelli’s mother says he is a big teddy bear of a guy and does have a fairly loud laugh, but she characterizes it as more infectious and cute. Police have heard the laugh and did, indeed, ticket the young man.

I think if “O’Hanion would leave the poor guy alone this would soon become a non-issue. It shouldn’t take Solomon to figure this one out. And if they ever outlaw laughter, can smiling be far behind?

It’s one more instance of man’s inhumanity to man and instead of picking on each other, we should all try to live together as one big happy family. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. I quote that often. I’m not an overly religious guy, but it makes a lot of sense to me.

I smile a lot. I whistle. I laugh. I’m a happy guy, and I wish I could share the love and be the catalyst for world peace through joy and humor. Have a great weekend, and I hope you have many reasons to laugh and smile.

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