Sometimes our bodies have a mind of their own! These are the absolute worst times imaginable to be overwhelmed with a giggle fit. It must have been such a bizarre sight to witness in person! Content has been edited for clarity.
"A friend of mine received ACL reconstruction surgery and very nearly died in the process. The hospital had mixed up the anesthesia for the spinal block, and they instead gave her an emergency coagulant. She started having these really bad seizures on the operating table, and the doctor had to quickly put her in a medically-induced coma. This coma lasted for two weeks, but it felt like an absolute eternity. The workers told us that they had no idea if the damage to her brain or her organs would be permanent, or if she would even ever wake up again. They day this horrific incident happened in the hospital, I ended up leaving work early because I could not think straight. As a result, I missed a key meeting that I was supposed to attend. I had already promised I would be there for this meeting, and I felt really bad. Thee next day at work, a coworker came up and asked me why I wouldn't be at the meeting. I began to say how my friend was in a coma, and we had no idea how bad it truly was, and she may never wake up again. But that is when it happened. I started to laugh uncontrollably.
I even tried to tell my coworker that, 'There is nothing funny about this,' but that just made me laugh even harder. My coworker simply stared at me in shock and confusion. I was pretty perplexed myself. I have never had that sort of thing happen to be before, or even since. To this day, I have no idea if that coworker thought that I was fabricating a completely ridiculous excuse to miss a meeting, or if she thought I was a psychopath, or both. I didn't enjoy laughing about this traumatic event at all. Looking back on it, I am guessing that my laughter came from trying to answer my coworker's question. My brain must have been telling me that the truth was so absurd and unexpected, that I felt so ridiculous even saying it to her.
Thankfully, my friend made a full recovery, although she did have to return to that dreadful hospital a second time in order to get the actual routine surgery she was meant to receive in the first place. The hospital did put my friend's family in touch with some sort of legal counsel pretty quickly. I don't know what all came of this, but there was definitely a massive lawsuit."
"Way back in high school, we were all watching this play about a girl dying of an overdose. This performance was nowhere near Tony award-winning material. The girl who was playing the part was way too dramatic, practically chewing up the scenery. When she finally collapsed dead on her bed, the theater was completely silent. You could have heard a pin drop. One of the students with a mental disability shouted out, 'Oh well!,' and the entire auditorium exploded with laughter. What made this entire experience better was that this student up on stage was very popular and very, very conceited. She was a cheerleader and was dating the captain of the football team. Apparently, they both thought they were going places with their awful attitudes. It turns out that the place in question was running the drive-thru at the local Long John Silver's. A very fun part about this story is that the student who cried out in the audience was treated like a total celebrity. People in the audience kept high-fiving him."
"So there I was, donating blood in college with my friend. We had both finished up the procedure and went to the table for Chips Ahoy cookies and Minute Maid juice, where they had people stationed to watch you, in order to make sure you didn't pass out or anything. So my friend is 6' 2" and a big muscular dude. We thought all we needed was a juice box, and we would be good to go. We both stood up, and the life completely drains from my friend's face. He falls over like a sack of potatoes, right on top of a much smaller kid. Well, I completely lose it and begin laughing like a hyena. But to be fair, I was also pretty light-headed and out of it. A very tiny nurse comes over and starts trying to roll my friend over. He is still there, unconscious on top of this poor kid, who only showed up to give some blood that day. My friend woke up a minute later, and I am still cackling away. The nurses all then give me the evil eye, like I was somehow at fault here. Now I am not a big guy, and I doubt that I would have been able to help, even if I wasn't weak from donating. So I just tiptoed out of there with a smile on my face, desperately trying to hide my giggles from the entire room. I wanted to give the nurses space to take care of my friend. He is totally fine by the way. 10/10 would laugh through it again."
"Back when I was fourteen, my middle-school class had to end class early to head over to an all-school assembly with a special guest. The special guest was a mean looking, fully tattooed individual. When I say fully tattooed, I mean he had two full sleeves, as well as his entire face, ears, most of his shaved head, and probably his chest and legs were covered in tattoos too. He had multiple piercings, was over six feet tall, and had legally changed his name to 'The Scary Guy'. Well, The Scary Guy's mission was to stop bullying. He would travel all around England (where we were located), riding his Harley-Davidson motorcycle and spreading the message that bullying is dangerous and harmful. This first thing that this peculiar man did in his presentation was to hold up a large photo of a little girl. This girl must have been ten or eleven, with some stereotypically nerdy characteristic. The Scary Guy told us, 'This girl was bullied. She was bullied relentlessly for her looks. She was bullied for her teeth. She was bullied for her hair.'
Silence enveloped the room, and a somber mood filled the air as we all sat quietly, paying attention like someone would if they were at a funeral. That was when my best friend leaned over and whispered to me, 'Maybe that was what he looked like when he was younger.'
Never in my life had I bit harder on my bottom lip than right at that moment. I probably drew some blood. Piercing eyes stared right at my best friend, trying to silently scream at him. That was the funniest line I had ever heard, and it was the absolute worst possible moment to hear that. The intense atmosphere made it impossible to angrily whisper a response back at him. I tried so, so hard not to draw attention to myself as I reverse-snort my laughter in, while choking on the tears erupting from my eyes."
"I had this internship at our local country courthouse once. I was working for a judge who did probation revocations. The judge was extremely serious, and I had never seen him smile or laugh. One day, we all got settled into the court room, and the officers started to bring in the inmates. The inmates wore shackles on their wrists and ankles. The inmates also had to sit in the jury box. These jury box chairs were bolted to the floor, and they could twist but not lean back. Once everyone was seated, an inmate decided to try to prop himself up on the low wooden wall of the box. Well, the chair couldn't handle the way that he was sitting, and it broke spectacularly. The poor inmate made the loudest thud when he hit the ground, and then he made lots and lots of grunts as he tried to get up. The entire courtroom was silent. The judge was stone-cold silent. The inmate was flailing at this point, and his shackles kept jingling. One of the chains had gotten stuck, and the poor inmate legitimately could not get up. I absolutely lost it. All I could see was his feet swaying in the air, and I couldn't contain myself. I started laughing so hard that I was crying and could barely breathe. Afterwards, all the other inmates started laughing uncontrollably. We all got the glare of death from the judge, but we all literally had the worst fit of giggles. Even the officers present couldn't hold it, and they busted out laughing as they were untangling the man from the chair. The judge looked so angrily towards me, but how was I supposed to hold it?"
"Back when I was around ten or eleven, my family and I went to a funeral for this aunt that had passed away due to cancer. My dad had not really liked that aunt in the first place, and they never were very close, but he still went to the funeral. He didn't want to make a scene or openly talk poorly about her, so he was mainly just keeping to himself. During a somber moment of silence, my cousin, this deceased aunt's daughter, started to sing 'Ave Maria' as a sort of eulogy while everyone else was still sitting down. Quietly, my dad started to mock her singing in a very high-pitch tone. He was was quiet enough for only me to hear him, while I was sitting by his side. I started to cover my mouth because I wanted to laugh so hard. The more that I tried to contain myself, the more that my dad did his high-pitch singing. It got to the point that there were tears in my eyes. Another aunt behind me saw me bent over, holding my mouth and my stomach and openly crying. She leaned over and told me, 'Don't worry honey, she is in a better place now.'
I completely lost it. It was so bad. I was consumed by this laughing fit, where the more I tried to contain myself, the more I just laughed. Even my cousin had stopped her loud singing and stared at me, as if I had murdered her mom myself. I excused myself and got out of that room so, so fast. I waited for the rest of my family to return inside the car. I could still see the rest of my family from the funeral staring daggers at me. During the car ride home, I had to explain to my mom and my sister that my dad was the one who had made me laugh uncontrollably. My dad simply answered, 'You all are lucky that I didn't bring my trombone and make a sad noise while they were putting her into the ground!'"
"When I was about nine, my mom found a cassette tape that I had recorded with my tape recorder. She called me downstairs, and my heart sank when I saw the tape recorder on the table and the look on her face. It looked like I was going to be beaten with a belt soon. So I figured myself to be an aspiring stand-up comedian, and I would record stories on my tape recorder. The thing is, the entire tape was full of me telling stories full of super creative but gross potty humor stories. My mom was super opposed to potty humor. She told me to sit down and listen to it. And then she pressed play. I had to listen to my own recordings while my mom glared at me. Unfortunately, a few of them made me start to snicker. I couldn't help it. I thought they were just too funny, even though I knew I would be punished even worse just for laughing!"
"When I was a kid, I often found myself laughing at the most inappropriate things, for the worst reasons. They often weren't very funny at all. For example, in the fifth grade, my class went on a field trip to see a Japanese Taiko drum performance at the local theater. It was genuinely very cool. I was not expecting the drums to be so massive and powerful. About halfway through the performance, one of the younger, muscular Japanese American drummers came towards the front of the stage. In a deep bass voice, he told the audience how he was going to sing a song that his now deceased grandfather had taught him years and years ago. He started to tear up, and he quickly wiped away his tears. He then started singing, but it was in a high falsetto voice. Now don't get me wrong, the song was absolutely beautiful, but for whatever reason, I felt this uncomfortable smile start to form on my lips. I panicked and internally started screaming at myself to stop this immediately. My lips parted to show my teeth, and I let out a quick giggle. My teach shot me a look and chastised me under her breath. Several of the girls next to me whispered that I must be finally showing my true colors. But the song was actually beautiful! I had never felt so betrayed by my body in my young life. I am still mortified by that moment, years and years later."
"At the time, I was probably thirteen or fourteen. I was sitting next to my mom in the drive-thru at our nearby Taco Bell. We had just pulled away from the speaker, when all of a sudden, my mom just rear ends the people in front of us. There wasn't any particular reasoning behind this, except for the fact that my mom is a genuinely terrible driver. She always has been. So there we are clogging up the drive-thru line. My mom asks me to look in the glove compartment for the registration and insurance information for the car. I don't find that. All I find is a box of Tic Tacs. I was already supremely embarrassed, and the ridiculousness of this discovery really got to me. It was like the icing on the cake. I could not stop laughing. I was certain that this really upset my mom, and looking back I do feel bad about it, but I just laughed and laughed, and I offered my mom a congratulatory Tic Tac."
"I work in healthcare. A few years ago, I was meeting with a sixty-something-year-old patient and their family member, both female. I assumed that the family member was her adult daughter, since they looked quite alike. We were wrapping up the appointment and were cracking a few lighthearted jokes. Addressing the family member, I told her something along the lines of, 'You must get that form your mother!' referring to the patient. The patient cocked her head to one side and firmly told me that, 'She isn't my daughter, she is my sister!' Before I had comprehended the gravity of the statement, I reflexively let out a laugh and smile. That must have communicated to the pair that I was thinking, 'That was a funny joke, the patient looks thirty years older than the family member!'
Well, the two of them did not smile back. The patient proceeded to explain that the person she brought with her was her older sister. Oops. Needless to say, I did not bounce back from that one and actually felt quite badly for hurting the patient's feelings."
"To preface this, there are a ton of NDA contracts around this story for obvious reasons, so I'll only be able to tell you what I can. I was working for a video game company that was showing several games for E3. For those of you that don't know, E3 the largest gaming convention in the country where big names like Nintendo and PlayStation show off their new games. One of the games we were debuting was a family-friendly game with some charm, but the actual content and gameplay mechanics was super cheap and poorly designed. The CEO was a huge fan of this title, and he thought that it would be a big seller for us. We all knew this game would tank, but we tried not to contradict him too much, since he was our corporate overlord. When we all met as a team before the E3 show, the CEO said that he had really high hopes for this game, and he claimed that it would probably win a 'Best Game Of Show' honor. Without thinking, I burst out laughing in the middle of this meeting with the CEO, some other investors, and even the game's development head. I couldn't help it, it just came out of nowhere. Even as I was laughing, I could instantly tell that I had blown it. One look from the CEO, and my laughter abruptly ended. I tried to tell him, 'Oh, I thought you were joking...'
Alas, he was not! Ironically enough, this game ended up not winning any awards, and especially not 'Best Game Of Show'. The CEO told me that he wished that he hadn't mentioned that comment to the entire team. Afterwards, the development team went through a huge drop in morale partially because the CEO had been building up this team so much with false praise. Oh, well!"
"I used to work as an EMT for a private ambulance company, mainly doing inner facility transports and gurney calls with the occasional ER call as well. We would work 24-hour shifts, which usually turned into 27-hour shifts with one hour of sleep in between. We would start at ten in the morning, and we were supposed to get off at ten the following morning, but we usually didn’t get off until about one in the afternoon. Well, one day we get our last call of the shift, so around 10 a.m. when we should be getting off after working all day and night with no sleep. We have to take a patient to a doctor's visit for a shoulder surgery check up. My partner and I are in the room with the patient during the check up as he’s on the gurney (because he can’t walk), and we can’t just leave him in there. So my partner is on one side of this tiny exam room, and I’m across from him on the other side, with the doctor, patient, and his wife in between. It was a nice older innocent couple in their mid to late seventies. Anyway, my partner and I are exhausted and basically delirious, just kind of zoning out while the doctor is talking to them and mumbling over the x-rays. Then the doctor says, 'And here you can see the head is connected to the shaft.'
At that moment, my partner and I just lose it. Not like a little giggle, but full on trying to hold back our tears because we are CRYING with laughter. We couldn’t breathe because we were laughing so hard. We kept trying to look down to get our act together, but any time either of us looked up and made eye contact, we lost it again. This went on for a solid ten minutes. Anyway, that company we worked for was awful. We were run into the ground so badly with the exhausting hours and poor pay. EMS was a unique field with a special breed of people, to say the least."
"Oh boy, this horror story is from back in high school. We had one of those speakers come to our school and talk about driving under the influence. In this instance, the speaker was the mother of the victim, her seventeen-year-old daughter. I know this sounds really bad already, but my mind was observing something totally different from what the mother was speaking about. When a photo was brought up of what the daughter was wearing the night that she died, the mother brought out the daughter's sweater from Macy's in her hand. This sweater was so butt ugly. It was absurdly ugly. I vocalized the smallest, tiniest laugh as I realized what I thought about it. I tried to distract everyone by disguising the laugh as a cough. It was too late though. I was sitting along the front row, off to one side, and the mother glanced over at me for a second before returning her gaze to the middle of the gym. Some nearby students looked at me as well. I tried to frown as quickly as I could, to show that I was deeply engaged in the material. I think I fooled most people with it, but I found myself completely mortified on the inside.
The daughter's attire in the photo was about as 80s as you could ever find. The getup did look absurd. I wasn't thinking at the time, I was just engrossed by the story of her daughter and the fashion choices completely caught me off guard. Thank goodness I didn't get seriously called out for laughing though! I tried my best to stay completely quiet and still for the rest of the talk."
"I was 13, my little sister was 12. We were home alone with Dad while Mom and two other sisters went to town for something, I can't recall what. There was a slasher movie on the television, and we were watching that while Dad was reading his book. My dad had cerebral palsy, so movement was difficult for him. On top of that, he was older and had a few relatively minor health issues. So we're watching a movie when I heard Dad coughing. We turn around to see him, not coughing, but choking on something. We got up to help, but we were just kids and we didn't know what to do. He lost consciousness and face planted onto the living room floor. I didn't know what to do, and my sister was screaming. I tried to pick him up, but all I did was drop him again, face-first into the carpet. He got a carpet burn on his forehead, which left a permanent scar. About this time, I heard a Harley-Davidson motorcycle passing by outside. I dashed out onto the porch and just started shrieking. I have no idea if I said anything coherent, most likely it was just raw noise. Whatever, the guy heard us and pulled into the yard. I led him back into the house to find Dad sitting up on the floor, conscious, if a bit flushed. Apparently, two face plants had dislodged whatever was choking him. The neighbor understood, helped us get Dad up, and then went on his way. Daddy reassured me and my sister that everything was fine and to go back to our movie. Yeah, after that horrific nightmare, not much horror movie watching would be happening that day. My sister curled up on the sofa and started crying from the post-panic nerves.
I settled on the other sofa and just started laughing. I mean full-on gut buster, can't breathe sort of laughter. The whole situation was NOT funny, and I kept trying to tell Dad that I was trying not to laugh. He understood and made a joke about it, trying to calm us down. It took a while, but eventually I was able to shake it off. But, much later, after I was married with kids of my own, he told me that laugh was the scariest part for him. He said it was like the laughter of a madman in Purgatory. Hysterical laughter is no joking matter."