Whether it’s a gut-wrenching belly laugh or a subtle stray giggle, laughing has the ability to produce endorphins, which elevate our moods to delightfully bonkers territory. Only good can come from laughing, unless of course, your laugh is more closely related to that pink farm animal snort or an overbearing “who-brought-that-guy” howl. In which case, Dear God, please no.
Today, I’m bringing awareness to an important social issue concerning oblivious lol-ers who bear side-eye worthy chuckles. And I’m simply doing it out of the kindness of my heart. Honestly, if I don’t then who will? So without further ado, here are the 8 different kinds of laughs.
1. The Nervous, Literally-My-Life-Is-Over Laugh
Oh, my good old buddy. The many overly anxious times we shared together still pierces my heart. The nervous laugh is common among fragile freshmen, guilty gabbers, and uncomfortable moments in front of crush-worthy mega babes. It sounds like a struggling relationship decorated with raised eyebrows. It’s never paired with a proud moment but it’s one we can all relate to.
2. The Silent-Gasper Laugh
Nothing is more emotionally frustrating than delivering a crowd-pleasing witticism that clearly deserves it’s own lolz-parade, but instead receiving a silent laugh attack that could easily be confused with someone aggressively choking (which is no laughing matter). The silent laugh sounds similar to no one responding to your group text. It’s lost among the most confusing phenomena in life, right next to what fans see in Chris Brown and the anteater. I know.
3. The Courtesy Laugh
This one gets a lot of shit for being overwhelmingly forced, which contradicts the point of laughing in the first place. This sounds similar to a stray cough in an auditorium where you are giving a speech to a quiet and confused crowd. Translated into words, a CL says, “oh honey, you tried,” which, for some, may be worse than no laugh at all. But I’m torn. On hormone-ridden days, if I have the extra emotional energy to attempt to brighten your day with some wisecrack I whipped up in a millisecond, you better reciprocate with the most sincere giggle you can manage. If you passed Basic Decent Human Academy, this will be a cakewalk. Figure it out.
4. The Knee-Slapping, Tear-Crying Belly Laugh
FINALLY. Someone appreciates your pun, which just shaved pages off your next journal entry. Bless. The knee-slapper is the finest validation for anyone burdened with insecurity and paralyzing self-doubt. Or so I hear. This belly laugh sounds like cash-money and trophies banging together in your backseat. Stardom is in your reach. Take your crown, you little comedy angel.
5. The Girly Flirty Giggle Laugh
Since the beginning of time, women have laughed at mild to mediocre jokes from the objects of their affection simply to play up their flirt-game. I’ve done it. You’ve done it. And even though our voices range in octaves, the giggle is delivered the same: like a 7-year-old sibling who got the better gift on Christmas. Repetitive hip-pivots generally accompany said “haha.” Later, the whole crew: long sips from a straw, finger-nibbling, and eye contact also make an appearance.
6. The Overdone Laugh
Think a contoured Kardashian face or an 80s perm tainted with an entire can of hairspray. Some things are overdone to the point of destruction. In which case, I give you: the overdone, PAY-ATTENTION-TO-ME, bear claw to the face, bear roar. This occurs at random, like when you tell a coworker that you recently switched from chunky peanut butter to smooth and they burst out into hyena hysterics. You really can’t predict when one is going to have a mishap in judgment like this resulting in the decline of their social status. It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there, kiddies. Just, don’t be that guy and you’ll be fine.
7. The I-Have-Absolutely-No-Idea-What’s-Going-On-Right-Now Laugh
This unfortunate hee-haw is delivered when one, lets call her Kara, has been half listening, half scheming how she can exit the conversation. Mid-drift, Kara notices Mr. Chatterbox is now laughing but her lack of interest distracted her from knowing what could possibly be so funny. Still, social graces say Kara is required to respond with an equally enthusiastic chuckle due to Mr. Chatterbox’s efforts, in which case her stray giggle comes off as a whimper from a lost puppy slash cry for help.
8. The Snort Laugh
I’ve seen this go right and I’ve seen this go very, Dear-God-No wrong. I’m not sure what constitutes the I’m-freakin’-adorable snort post hehe. You’ll know it when you hear it. But if said babe can pull it off, it is an all-the-awards champion. If not, it is a dark lonely fall into forever friend zone and just R.I.P.
Honestly, I have nothing but high hopes for you and your personal laugh track, especially now that you have been properly educated. So go out there and flash those pearly whites at all things funny, not funny, boring, and confusing for no other reason than I’m pretty sure it burns calories.