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Savoring Irony As Self-Medication

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Recent email to our oldest daughter, a report from the home front …


Your uncle loves his new computer and is having a ball—at least so far—trying to figure out how to send email. Except that he calls it “a-mail.” Perhaps he thinks that’s what it really is. Or perhaps it’s just the kind of joke adversity spawns in our ilk to ensure survival of the fittest, as in, we who counter capitulation to despair by having mutated higher development of the synapses enabling discernment of even that irony that barely teeters on the cusp of existence (like pigs who snuffle truffles); and, as in, we who rely on our capable offspring to couple exclusively with those deemed worthy in order to ensure the endurance of our race. Notwithstanding the eminent irony that the likely lack of such may cause our very extinction, of course. However, whatever. Savoring irony as self-medication serves us well in fending off despair, mostly, though its performance in staving off death leaves much to be desired so far. But we gods in mortal coil never last long anyway, and at least we can laugh our way to the graveyard. Much better than wailing and gnashing our teeth, I should think. Or perhaps I only so believe because that’s the path of evolution our particular genes have taken. Perhaps, also, by and by, we shall see if they have chosen wisely. Those who laugh last are those who have lasted to laugh, after all.

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