Coupling is one of my very favorite shows, and I was reminded of the giggle loop yesterday...the giggle loop is, to quote the character Jeff: "You are surrounded by people for a moment of silence when the Giggle Loop begins... Suddenly out of nowhere this thought comes into your head: the worst thing I could possibly do during a minute's silence is laugh. And as soon as you think that you almost do laugh -- automatic reaction. But you don't, you control yourself, you're fine. Whew."
"But then you think how terrible it would have been if you laughed out loud in the middle of a minutes silence. And so you nearly do again, only this time it's a bigger laugh. And then you think how awful this bigger laugh would have been. And so you nearly laugh again, only this time it's a very big laugh, it is an enormous laugh. Let this bastard out, and you get whiplash. And suddenly you are in the middle of this completely silent room and your shoulders are going like you are drilling the road. And what do you think of this situation? Oh dear Christ, you think it's funny!"
I was at orientation for my new job, we had to watch these horrible training videos, I was surrounded by eighteen year old boys...a video on safety showed a man who had lost an eye during the course of a days work at this chain store. That's not funny. But we had been sitting in this room for hours not talking. How inappropriate to laugh at the poor man who lost his eye at work. The Giggle Loop began....next was a lady describing climbing up to get something a shelf, she gestured with her hand...she was missing a finger. That's really not funny...I thought I was going to crack up. It was a little like what happens to me in church. I was biting the inside of my lip...trying not to laugh. Then there was a silly and poorly acted dramatization of someone falling and hitting their head. It was not real, so blessed relief. Everyone laughed. A bit too hard. The Giggle Loop caught us all!