LAUGHTER, n. An interior convulsion, producing a distortion of the features and accompanied by inarticulate noises. It is infectious and, though intermittent, incurable. Liability to attacks of laughter is one of the characteristics distinguishing man from the animals — these being not only inaccessible to the provocation of his example, but impregnable to the microbes having original jurisdiction in bestowal of the disease. Whether laughter could be imparted to animals by inoculation from the human patient is a question that has not been answered by experimentation. Dr. Meir Witchell holds that the infection character of laughter is due to the instantaneous fermentation of sputa diffused in a spray. From this peculiarity he names the disorder Convulsio spargens.
2007 Update: The sword of a bore, shield of a ninny, the dagger in a lover's hand and the horn of a hippopotamus. "Eureka," at the discovery of fool's gold.
A stranger laughed beneath my wall
So I asked him tell his story
He said he'd taken Adam's fall
And that same path to glory
"My pride, it got the best of me
and my wisdom left me dry
Moved by curiosity,
I took to drink, wander and lie.
"I've lost my home and my direction
My job, my love, my bearing.
Where my fist once held insurrection
It's empty now of all but caring.
"The Earth's a swamp and I am mired
No rope to climb nor room to wiggle."
"Then why do you laugh?" I inquired.
"Because otherwise, I'd giggle."