We took my disabled mother in law to see Ken Dodd at Parr Hall, Warrington a few weeks ago – thank you Warrington for the parking ticket. Ken Dodd is still wielding his tickling stick aged 83. On this occasion his concert ended at 1.00 in the morning – perhaps rather insensitive given the age and circumstances of his audience. He still has the ability to make people laugh – we should always give thanks for people who can make others laugh, even if, by now, the joke “have you ever had a tickle, missus” is wearing extremely thin.
His tickling stick reminds me of Dee Hock’s maxim:
You can’t tickle yourself. It’s a social act.
So, who’s tickling me today? I think it haas to be Hock’s reflection on his efforts to develop a new sort of organisation (from the same page as his maxim – p284: Birth of the Chaordic Age):
In the darkest times, and there were many, I could never look out at so many wonderful people and engage with them in laughter and give and take without walking from the room filled with wonder at the human spirit. They could do anything! Anything! And so can everyone, everywhere, if our minds are open enough, and our spirits strong enough to conceive of institutions that enable us to do so.
I’m not giggly, but giddy with that. It’s very ticklicious.