i believe this is the same mark henderson who has had a season ticket in the loft next to my sister for a few years. interesting thing about humour ... but first, read this:
"Serious side to clowning around
by Mark Henderson
THERAPEUTIC clowning may be a way to help IVF patients.
Research at the Assaf Harofeh Medical Centre near Tel Aviv suggested that entertaining women with a clown as they recovered from IVF treatment could nearly double the chances of success.
Patients who were visited by a clown soon after embryos were transferred to the womb — one of the most stressful IVF phases — had a pregnancy rate of 35.5 per cent compared with 19.3 per cent among women on non-humour treatment.
Using a clown was the idea of Shevach Friedler, a fertility doctor, who had also done a course at the Jacques Lecoq school of mime and theatre in Paris. “I have a theatrical background from one of the best movement and mime schools in France,” Dr Friedler said. “My background is clowning and movement. I’m also a physician who works in IVF. I thought we could combine the two.
“We know that fertility patients are very stressed. Everybody knows that humour is an effective way to reduce stress.”
Clowns are sometimes used in child medicine but rarely for helping adults.
Dr Friedler recruited his friend Shlomi Algussi, a restaurant chef and clown, to help his patients. They eschewed the typical red-nosed clown and invented a new character — a chef in a striped vest — to appeal to adult women. He performs magic tricks and tells jokes on a culinary theme.
The findings were based on a study of 93 patients and 93 controls"
wish i could remember the reference, think it is talmudic, anyway ... there is a story about a man in the marketplace who sees the prophet elijah and asks him who there will go to olam ha-ba (heaven). elijah points to a couple of guys across the way. the man rushes over to them and asks them what they do for a living. they tell him that they are jesters, that they make people laugh.
if you think about it, when you laugh, your stuff/burden/cares is/are lifted from your shoulders momentarily, and you get a bit of a rest, and build up a bit more strength to deal with it all when it lands on you again. good one dr. friedler!