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Monday, January 30, 2012

Why Does Someone Like Me Write Humor?

Someone asked me why I write humor, or for that matter, how can I write humor? I know what they were really saying, “How and why can someone who has a spinal cord injury possibly find anything to laugh about, let alone share it with others.”

I was raised in a family that laughed a lot. We were taught that there was a funny side to just about anything, and it was a lot better to laugh than cry. Occasionally, my mother would think my brother, sister and I might be getting a little too far into the hilarity and she would say, “Be careful. Someone could end up crying.”

It was usually Dad.

I didn’t see anything funny about being disabled; certainly not for the first few years. It hit me right out of the blue. I guess I would be better off saying it enveloped me, and it seemed pretty blue. I was sitting in my wheelchair one day, either in a line-up at the bank or the grocery store, I don’t remember which, but that’s not important.

The idea to start writing humor was propelled in my direction. The unknown person in front of me gave me the idea. I remember thinking, someone should write about living life at fart height. (Think about it for a minute. You’ll get the picture.)

My wife had been encouraging me to write the kind of material I wanted to write, now that my career of writing what other people wanted me to write for them was behind me. Maybe I was the person to write about living at fart height.

In the ensuing eighteen years I have written nine books, hundreds of newspaper features, and magazine articles. My readers may ascertain that I am disabled from some of the things I have written, but I still haven’t written about living at fart height.

Until today.

I write about being a husband, father, dog owner and observer of life. All of those subjects have little or nothing to do with being disabled. Being disabled is just a small part of my life. For a lot of people it defines me, but I don’t define myself that way. Reader’s Digest said my specialty is making readers laugh at me, at themselves, and at life in general.

It’s that life in general where the humor is most easily found.

I’m not your everyday writer. A TV talk show host once said she never know what I might say next. (Truth be known, neither do I.) One look at my titles will tell you I am just a little bit different. It’s been that way from the very first book, Justice Is Blind – And Her Dog Just Peed In My Cornflakes.

My ninth book was just released last week. My Slice Of Life Is Full Of Gristle is my seventh collection of short humorous essays. My other two are novels, including the top selling Christmas humor book on Amazon Kindle leading up to Christmas 2011.

And someday I promise. I’ll write about living at fart height.

My books are available at

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Gordon Kirkland At Large

Writings and Wramblings from the Wandering and Wondering Mind of Gordon Kirkland