Laughter Down Under

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The morning news casters joke about rugby flubs and American Idol, laughter is recorded throughout the studio and all is caught casually on national television. They break into song when their reporting seems cliche, and replay sporting mishaps with joking commentary. Each morning in our hotel rooms, the difference between this and American news reporting is plainly noticeable. Aussies like laughter and are good at keeping things light and cheerful. It seems shocking at first- as some of the jokes would cause controversy in the states. Now it just seems charmingly Aussie- the laughter is contagious. Us americans we could learn a thing or two about not taking life so seriously.

This seemingly national obsession with comedy is not just something we’ve noticed from the television screen. One night on our dive boat our guide delivered a perfectly believable commentary on the behavior of sharks just before a scheduled night dive. We were mostly convinced that we’d be bumped by these creatures a few times, as we watched them circle in the lights under the boat. People became nervous as the guide watched the concern grow with a calm look of utter entertainment on his face. On another occasion a man at the local information site relished us with confusion as he threw out enough Aussie slang terms to make us wonder if he was still speaking English. We were all ready to find this fantastic local bakery serving up a delectable Stickybeak before figuring out this was simply a term for taking a glimpse at something. Comedy is everywhere and we are pretty sure it’s an Aussie secret to good health.

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