Four men below my hotel window in the “smoking area” are laughing. Then they spin their tale further and get to making each other laugh. You can tell they are tickled and beginning to cycle into a humor cyclone!
Then the story goes on and on. I can’t really hear what they are saying and the window does not open, but next thing you know I am laughing, too. I do not even know what I am laughing at!
Celebrate Life notes that “the same muscles are used in both laughing and crying. Both bring relief from tension when done aerobically, using muscles deep down in your belly.”
Do you remember the scene in Mary Poppins when the Uncle got them all laughing and they were floating off the ground? I would not be surprised to see these guys come past my second floor window at any moment.
Disney fandom says “Uncle Albert is a jolly, kind old man who lives in a small home in London. He is the uncle of Mary Poppins, and appears to have full knowledge of her abilities. He appears to suffer from an unnamed condition, triggered by laughter, where he floats into the air, a condition which Mary describes as “quite serious”. Bert reveals that his episodes are fairly common and that it “took three days to get him down” the last time it occurred. Though he loves having company, he becomes terribly sad whenever someone must leave.”
And while we are laughing, doubtless you remember the song “We’re so sorry, Uncle Albert.” Bob and I have been joking around with that anytime one of us says “Sorry.” Two minutes ought to do it on this one, unless you like or know anything about Admiral Halsey.
Wikipedia, the master of all firm knowledge, LOL states: Paul McCartney said “Uncle Albert” was based on his uncle. “He’s someone I recall fondly, and when the song was coming it was like a nostalgia thing.” He also stated that “I had an uncle – Albert Kendall – who was a lot of fun, and when I came to write ‘Uncle Albert’/‘Admiral Halsey’ it was loosely about addressing that older generation, half thinking, What would they think of the way my generation does things? That’s why I wrote the line ‘We’re so sorry, Uncle Albert.’” Paul also told an American journalist, “As for Admiral Halsey, he’s one of yours, an American admiral”, referring to Fleet Admiral William “Bull” Halsey (1882–1959). Paul has described the “Uncle Albert” section of the song as an apology from his generation to the older generation, and Admiral Halsey as an authoritarian figure who ought to be ignored.
Again reading Wikipedia, I cannot say we should ignore Admiral Halsey! “Halsey was made Naval commander of the South Pacific Area, and led the Allied forces over the course of the Battle for Guadalcanal (1942–1943) and the fighting up the Solomon chain (1942–1945). In 1943 he was made commander of the Third Fleet, the post he held through the rest of the war. He took part in the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval battle of the Second World War and, by some criteria, the largest naval battle in history. He was promoted to fleet admiral in December 1945 and retired from active service in March 1947.” At this moment, I do not have easy access to my Dad’s navy records from WW2. He was a flag man on several ships. I wonder if he served under Admiral Halsey? Research for a future blog. That would be something! So I guess the song will remind me of something new, my Dad.
All I can say is keep laughing and apologize to Uncle Albert when things go astray!