Lately it’s been hard to ___________ fill in the blank. Stay motivated, stay positive, be hopeful, find joy. It would be easy to give in to despair, especially for those of us experiencing a second lockdown. I avoid the news and some days I avoid any screens. Thankfully I live with a built in joy spreader.
My husband, Glyn, has been working from home since the pandemic began. He is one of the most optimistic people I have ever met. My father once said, “Glyn doesn’t just build castles in the air, he goes and lives in them.” It’s true, he really is as optimistic as he seems, all the time. He also has a knack for bringing lightheartedness to the most serious situations. He is a classic class clown. Anytime there is a call for seriousness, he brings humour.
The other day was his first time wearing a mask in public. We went to pick up a few groceries, Glyn saves my asthmatic lungs from viral threats by letting me stay in the car with the dog. We drove to our favourite organic butcher’s shop (sorry vegans) and he put his mask on in the car, went into the shop and announced to everyone: “Don’t worry it’s me, the Masked Avenger!” It makes me laugh just writing it.
Over the years we attended engagements, weddings, debutante balls and every other conceivable event. Because of my work with young people, we got to go to bucketloads. I would work hard to convince him to dance with me, because I love dancing, but Glyn is a drummer. Dancing was not his jam. He would occasionally give in but he couldn’t be on the dance floor without seeing us all like muppets. We would be ‘dancing’ around and he would be humming the muppet song in my ear. We would bump into people because he thought they were all in on the joke, plus he never got the hang of steering. I took him to a ball room dancing class once. It quickly deteriorated, with everyone giggling at Glyn’s attempt at the Nutbush, until the teachers screeched “It’s not funny!” But it was, it really was.
Glyn just sees the funny side of everything. He can be serious, he has his moments, but it doesn’t last long. Glyn can make me laugh no matter how bad things get. Like the night he parted ways with the band he had formed.
Side note: When Glyn was four years old, he and his best friend Andy, dreamed of being in a band and they wanted a gold record. They formed a ‘band’ called the ‘Morteins’ – in opposition to the Beatles. Glyn played on cardboard boxes and Andy played a tennis racquet. It was a life long dream. They grew up, formed the band ‘Stars’ and made not one, but two gold albums.
Google ‘Stars – Look After Yourself’ if you want to take a peek on YouTube. That brings us back to the night he parted ways with the band.
On that fateful night, after the other band members left, we stood on the verandah of the old weatherboard house, where we were renting, in Caulfield. The band dream lay in pieces at our feet. I was twenty-four and had no idea what to say to Glyn. We didn’t know whether to rant and rave or just burst into tears. We decided to go for a walk and as we went down the front steps Glyn, being serious, said “It’s a stark and dormie night tonight.” We fell about laughing and the gloom vanished.
That ended up being one of our best nights. We could just make out the Dandenong Ranges in the distance as we walked. Instead of despairing, Glyn talked about how, one day, we would live up there in the hills. Another dream. We had no money, band life was full of fame but not fortune. Within a few months we had bought a brand new house in Cockatoo and we were living a completely different life. But that’s another story.
It’s a picture of how our life’s journey has been.
Last year, we went to the UK and Europe for our 40th wedding anniversary. Below is a photo of us visiting a pebble beach. We made it to the water like a couple of old chooks stumbling on the pebbles, getting back was a different story. The pebbles shifted and slid and so did we. I clung on to Glyn and he did his best to drag us both up the moving slopes. The trouble was, we couldn’t stop laughing. There was no one for miles so we imagined ourselves stranded in a sea of pebbles forever. It was hilarious. You had to be there.
Glyn has always brought laughter to our marriage. When Glyn speaks, spoonerisms and malapropisms abound. It’s like he has verbal dyslexia. He had a few nicknames in the band. One of them was ‘Guy Deadly’ and another was ‘Butterball’ and the way he muddled his words was know as ‘Butterballia.’ He is famous for it.
Ever wonder what is it like to live with a class clown? It has its moments. But overall it has filled my life with joy. When life offers doom and gloom, Glyn tries to say something profound, muddles up his words and we end up laughing at his Butterballia.
Laughter is good for the soul and joy can be found all around us, we just have to look.
And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.Roald Dahl
Would you like to hear some Butterbalia? Of course you would, you’ve read this far.
- The carnivorous virus (Corona)
- The rain will come storming down like a teacup. (No idea really 🤣)
- They’re like two socks in a pock. (Two peas…)
- The munkles his unkey? (The monkey’s his uncle – The Lion King)
- She wears her sleeve on her face. (Heart on her sleeve)
- Where are my shunter blunters? I mean my glockenspiels. (Birkenstocks)
- It’s the vibe, it’s the mumbo. (Come on now, you know this one right?)
This was fun to write because I laughed so much re-reading them all and selecting these few. It is also pure joy to share a little about Glyn, with you, dear reader.