Legend has it he made more people laugh than anyone in history.
That statement is probably debatable and impossible to prove. What I find interesting is the contrast in this person. He co-authored a song in 1936 from a part he played in a movie. Years later in 1954, the song became a huge hit for Nat King Cole. The lyrics depict one who is struggling with sadness.
Smile, though your heart is aching
Smile even though it’s breaking
When there are clouds in the sky you’ll get by
If you smile through your fear and sorrow
Smile and maybe tomorrow
You’ll see the sun come shinning through for you
Light up your face with gladness
Hide every trace of sadness
Although a tear may be ever so near
That’s the time you must keep on trying
Smile, what’s the use of crying?
You’ll find that life is still worthwhile
If you just smile
The comedian who co-wrote the lyrics to this song was Charlie Chaplin.
The lyrics of this song call to my mind a single grandmother who attends the church where my wife and I attend. Circumstances in her life are not easy, but she basically has a positive attitude of life. I saw her crying one evening as I passed her, and I asked, “Are you okay, and is there something I can do?” From there we sat in a small room, and she shared with me the reasons for her crying. I then understood the why of her tears; I think I would have cried also. Some days it is virtually impossible to smile.
You know, just because someone is identified with laughter does not mean they don’t also know sorrow.
November 15, 2010