laugh at me

He is young and the sort of stupid that thinks he ought to be taken seriously, and he is quite taken with a girl who is smart enough to know that there is nothing so serious you can't laugh at it. She has a smile and a joke for everything, and sometimes, when she is feeling existential, wonders if she is missing the point, if the world isn't a joke. And he holds her tight and takes it all very seriously, even the jokes. Especially the jokes. There is nothing more serious than human laughter.

She often wonders if he doesn't get the jokes. He often wonders if she is laughing at him, because although he is very serious, he is not so stupid as to think that laughter only means someone is happy. And she laughs at his solemn promises of devotion, his earnest declarations of love, his sincere praises. He pours out his heart and she laughs and tells him he's all right, or a reasonable facsimile thereof. And he feels patronized.

When he talks to her, she can't keep from feeling that he doesn't think of her as an actual person. He is very serious and has a very serious story that he wants to tell. He doesn't understand her laughter or her jokes. He doesn't understand that humans are not meant to be serious. Sometimes she thinks she would not mind being a prop in someone's fantasies, so long as those fantasies had room for laughter. His do not. So she laughs at him, and finds it funny, because the alternative is too depressing to contemplate.

Eventually he decides that she is not behaving like someone to whom he has sung such solemn, earnest, sincere songs of praise. And what right does she have? Is this what she does with his love? He begins to tell her, subtly but certainly, that she is unworthy of the devotion he has given her. The implication is that she should be grateful.

Of course she only laughs at this. What did he expect? She laughs, and tells him he should't take himself so seriously. And then she is gone, and he is left with those words. One day he will understand, and if he is very lucky, he will laugh.

1 comment:

Kizolk said...

Oh yeah, wrote my huge ass message in the other post, but I actually wanted to say that out of the few posts I've read, this one is probably my favorite. Very powerful.