“Humor helps the heart to open. And heartfelt laughter leads us towards greater connection with those around us. If you can find a way to share humor with others, then there’s an openness towards greater listening and compassion. With the serious topics I write about […] there’s a way such stories can calcify the heart if one isn’t careful. I noticed this in my teaching—if I’m just giving my students the disturbing facts about humanity without humor, it can lead to depression, discouragement, and a deeper political/social apathy. So, humor seems to restore our humanity to us—it allows us to deal with suffering with a more open heart.”
By Gina Balibrera
Just before leaving town for the holidays I paid a visit to Ann Arbor’s subterranean Aardvark antique shop and came upon several boxes of Stereoscopic gold, at a price even the most frugal of treasure-hoarders can celebrate. I stood beholden to the stacks of rectangular cardstock bearing double images–of a gloomy pair of circus lions, or of two doe-eyed Victorian housewives swooning upon identical hand-colored velvet chaises, or of a bank in San Francisco, the twin photographs taken sometime before the 1906 earthquake that broke Market Street in two. A Stereoscope, for the unknowing, is a trick of the mind. The double imaged cards were once created with the intention of being held by elegant machinery. Lenses would cover the eyes, crossing them, to reveal a single image in three stunning dimensions.