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My 2 Cents: Categorizing laughter

Eric Chilton takes a look at "laughter" and what's behind it.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — So, I love to make people laugh. I mean who doesn't love the reaction you get when you tell a story that has them rolling in the aisles? No one, that's who.

In fact, my wife makes fun of me because I examine people's laughter and try to imitate it as well. (I never knew I did that until she pointed it out to be. But she is right.)

So I found a study completed by a gentleman named Robert Provine. This study examined the many different types of laughter and there were a few that stood out to me.

Etiquette Laughter: This is when your boss or someone you want to impress says something that's not that funny but you do that subtle, controlled laugh anyway.

Nervous Laughter: I hate this one. This is when you laugh at funerals, in church or when someone is telling a sad story. It actually is a weird way of our body relieving stress...but we all know how horrible that is.

Belly Laughter: The best kind. Just that sincere. "this is hysterical" kind of laughing. The kind that makes it hard to breathe. Love this one!

Pigeon Laughter: Weird name but basically its when someone does something, usually embarrassing, and you purse your lips together and try to hold the laughter in. The researcher said it causes us to make the same humming sound like a pigeon, hence the name.

Snorting Laughter: This one usually makes people laugh even harder but here's an interesting factoid. Women do this 25% of the time and men do it 33% of the time!

The bottom line here? Laughter is really about socialization. Think about it. We tend to laugh out loud in groups and more silently when we are alone.

Basically, it's all about the connection with others. And we could use more of that in this world. Couldn't we.

But that's just My 2 Cents.