The other day I was driving down to wine country to meet friends and go… wine tasting! On the way down Radiolab was doing a story on Laughter. Not just people laughing but laughing in other creatures. A study was done that demonstrated rats laughing! It doesn’t sound like human laughter but they are clearly laughing. What’s more they seem to enjoy it. They tickled them. When it stops they want more! So, there I was driving down the highway laughing out loud as I listen to… Laughter — We all laugh — and you’ll find that humor has very little to do with it. But what makes us laugh? To find out, the program tickles some rats, listens in on a baby’s first laugh, talks to a group of professional laughers, and travels to Tanzania to investigate an outbreak of contagious laughter.
After a lovely afternoon of wine tasting with great friends and an early dinner I headed home. Snap Judgement did a piece on False Prophets. Vikram Gandhi grew weary of fake religious gurus. So he became one. He named his guru-self “Kumare.” Followed by a story about the practice of taking Inuit children away from their homes and families to “educate” them in Catholic schools. A young Inuit girl lives through the violent transition between traditional and modern societies. Then came a piece on Faith Healing. What if you need a doctor, but doctors are not allowed?
The day was made complete by a car port moment (some people call them driveway moments and those people have driveways). Live Wire did a show that had me laughing out loud all by myself in the car. I can’t remember the specifics that got me but it was the perfect way to wrap up the day.
For this and so many other reasons, I love public radio.