On Sunny Lane: It's the Seventh Sense


I have fond memories of Sixth Grade and Mrs. Whitaker's class. I am sure she has gone to teacher heaven and is smiling down on her students now.

When we had health class, we didn't just learn about it, we lived it. At one point of the school year, Mrs. W. instituted a morning ritual that was an outgrowth of the personal hygiene section of the text.

As we sat at our desks each morning, we paired up and checked each other out to see that we were practicing good cleanliness. I don't remember exactly what all of the check points were, but I do recall explicitly that dirt under the fingernails was a no-no.

I often wondered how some of the farm boys fared with their inspections. They might have had to work harder to get all of the grime off of their bodies. And there was one boy whose skin was an ashen gray. I don't know if that was his skin tone, or if it was dirt. I do remember once, when we were in eighth grade, the teacher never missed her stride as she kept on lecturing and wrote him a note. In it, as she opened it on his desk and then threw it into the wastebasket, she asked if he would please go to the boys' restroom and wash his face.

Well, anyway, we learned about the circulatory system and the nervous system and all of the other systems that run around in our bodies. We learned about the organs and their functions. We learned about the five senses: taste, hearing, smell, hearing and touch.

Some people say that there is a sixth sense and that some people have it. It's kind of a hit-or-miss ability to foretell if something is going to happen--usually something ominous. Or, maybe, these people get a feeling about a person they meet for the first time--that there is something good, or bad, about them.

I believe there is a seventh sense and some people have it and some don't. It's called a sense of humor. Some people can find humor in the worst of circumstances and others don't laugh at anything. It appears to me that life is more enjoyable for those who have this sense. I should know, because I have it and I'm having lots of fun.

Trouble is it sometimes gets me into trouble, especially if I come across one of the non-laughers. When I think I am saying something funny, he or she may take it seriously.

On the other hand, not having a sense of humor can get a person into trouble, too.

Somebody told me a story about the comedienne Carol Burnett. She had done a comedy performance once at a women's prison and later visited one-on-one with some of the inmates. She spoke with a woman who was spending life in prison for killing her child. She said she didn't know you could laugh about the silly mistakes that children make.

I wonder what would happen if we could get the members of the Taliban to lighten up a little.


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