Laughter Where You Find It

Anyone who reads this blog knows I love laughter. (It’s even part of my name, Laugh2Learn.) You may also remember that I believe that there should be no invisible people (see my June 12, 2011 post) So last week while traveling in Oregon with my sister and brother-in-law, we ate at the Salty Dawg in Waldport. Our server was a wonderfully gregarious woman named Lorelei. She made us all laugh. At one point, she asked if we wanted anything else, and I told her if she would bring me a glass of water, I’d be so grateful I’d compose a poem for her. She promptly brought the water, and I ripped off a few lines of doggerel.

“I wrote a poem once,” said Lorelei.

With very little coaxing, and after reminding us that it was pretty outdated she recited:

 If Dreams Were But a Penny

 
If dreams were but a penny
what do i think I’d buy??
A night with Kevin Costner!!
Well. At least it’s worth a try.
If I can’t have Mr. Costner,
If he’s not within my reach.
Then let me have Sean Connery
with his sexy, broguish speech.
I cannot have Clint Eastwood
as already he is taken,
and Demi has got Bruce Willis
so that lust must be forsaken.
Since I cannot buy these men
for which i have the hots.
Then i shall take my penny
and make a purchase of Don Knotts!!!!!
 
Needless to say, we all got a very good laugh. I gave Lorelei my card, and asked her to email me the poem so I could post it on my blog.
 
So here’s to you Lorelei. Thank you for the wonderful time, the good food, and your poem.
 
And to the rest of you, take a moment to get to know those “invisible people” who serve your food. You will be richer for it, and you may even get a good poem and a great laugh.
 
And as for Don Knotts, you will never know what you missed!
 
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Invisible People

One of my favorite movies is Dirty Pretty Things. In it, Chiwetel Ejiofor, playing a hotel desk clerk responds to the question, “Who are you people?” with: “We are the invisible people. We drive your taxis, we wash your clothes, we clean your rooms, but you don’t see us.” The same week I saw that movie, I heard a story on NPR about a group of undergraduate students at a major California university who were teaching the housekeeping staff English. One of the staff commented, “We are invisible on this campus.”

Since that time, I have tried hard to have no invisible people in my life. Many of the invisible people have name tags on. When they do, I speak to them by name. The reactions are almost always positive. When they don’t have a nametag, or when I’m speaking to them on the phone, I ask them their name. The results are the same.