"Laughter is the best medicine." How often do we hear that?

I love to laugh. I try to hang out with people who make me feel good and make me laugh. I'll watch "The Big Bang Theory" on TV before I would "20/20."

A couple of weeks ago, we went out to dinner with my sister and brother-in-law in their car. On the way home, Diane turned the radio to a comedy station. Bill Engval was the featured comedian. We laughed all the way home. We sat in the driveway and continued to listen to Bill. Our evening ended on a happy high.

Bill: "I shot me a nice deer, and I hung it on the den wall in my house. My neighbor comes over and he says, 'Did you shoot that thing?' I said, 'Nope. He ran through the wall and got stuck.' Here's your sign."

The news is filled with depressing, sad and sometimes violent stories. I read the editorial page and I'm ready to throw myself in front of a stampeding herd of cats.

Me? I'm all about the lighter side of life. Sometimes I may miss the mark. It happens. Like it did to one of my email friends, the Rev. H. Robert Samuels, formerly from Lehighton, now residing in Williamstown and a pastor for 47 years. He recently shared this story.

"I was the Master of Ceremonies for a Lancaster Grace banquet at Jim Hostetters Banquet Hall in Mount Joy. The speaker was a Christian chiropractor.

It was time to introduce him and I said, 'Jim was going to serve Rice Krispies for an appetizer until he found out who the speaker was, then he changed.' There was hardly a smile in the audience. I was disappointed. So I said, 'Well I guess you don't know what Rice Krispies or chiropractors do.' From the back of the room, someone was nice to me and said very loudly, 'Snap, Crackle, and Pop!' Wow, they all caught on and the place was in an uproar. Then I told the story about the doctor who was both a chiropractor and an ear specialist."

Here is Pastor Samuels joke he wrote himself.

"A young man finished medical school. He also took some chiropractic training. He opened up two offices in the same building. One on east side of the hall was his chiropractic office and on the west side he specialized in ear problems. There was a passage way between them. A pastor went into his chiropractic office and was given 'the works.' Then he asked about his ear problems. He was told that he had to go to the other office. When he went there much to his surprise the doctor was already there. The doctor said, 'And what can I do for you?' The pastor quoted Psalm 51:8, 'Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.'"

Bill Cosby said, "You can turn painful situations around through laughter. If you can find humor in anything, even poverty, you can survive it."

Harry just informed me that we owe a hefty hunk of change to Income Tax.

A friend of mine works at the Tobyhanna Army Depot and is fearful she will be losing her job.

A friend of Harry's just found out he has lymphoma.

My daughter is moving to Texas in April. (Another story.)

If I didn't have laughter in my life, I'd be crying in my Coke.

Milton Berle said, "Always leave them laughing." So I'm going to tell you a dirty story.

A couple of washings ago, Harry brought me one of his white undershirts. "Look at the neck. Does that look dirty to you?"

It did. So I said, "You must have already worn it." To which he replied, "No I didn't. I just took it out of the drawer."

Last week, another laundry day. Harry was putting his own clean underwear in the drawers. He handed me a white undershirt and said, "This just doesn't look clean. It's like it was never washed. My socks don't look clean either."

I told him his socks never look clean. I think he runs around outside in the mud in his socks when I'm not looking. And he was due for new t-shirts anyway. We had a big Saturday night out and went to Wally World. Harry got new undershirts. Woo hoo.

Folding laundry, yet again, Harry made the now-getting-old observation that his underwear just looked dirty.

"Maybe there's something wrong with our water. Should we have it tested? I noticed a couple of my shirts with some food stains (steak sandwich sauce) didn't come out clean either," I said.

"I'd better check the washing machine. Maybe it's not agitating."

Yesterday when I came home, Harry told me he may have solved the dirty clothes issue.

A friend of ours introduced us to Melaleuca, a company that sells environmental wellness products, which includes laundry detergent. I had a large container that came with a pump. One pump for each washing. I had a spare container sitting on the shelf above the washer.

"How long have you been using the container with the pump?" he asked.

"I don't know. A couple of months I guess."

"That may be our problem. It's not a detergent. It's a laundry brightener. The detergent is the container sitting on the shelf."

Oops.

"Sooooooo, basically, all this time, we've been wearing dirty clothes. Ewwwww!" We looked at each other and started to laugh.

"I really am an idiot, aren't I?" I asked. And then we laughed some more.

The idiot then gathered up all their "clean" dirty underwear and did yet another load of laundry.