Making people laugh is VERY tricky, especially doing it consistently without feeling like you're resorting to lowest-common-denominator jokes or situations (such as falling over and injuring yourself or saying things loudly in stupid accents or broken speech.)
I'm lucky enough to have a girlfriend (yes, that'll usually be a lucky situation for me given that I am almost impossible to tolerate for more than 10 minutes) who laughs at almost everything, which is grand, but I still want to take that and make everyone else chuckle just the same. It's annoying and sometimes impossible, and given that I am not exactly the sharpest tool in the shed and don't know enough about anything in particular to delve into something so deeply that everything is witty it makes it even more frustrating on my part.
I'm happy to sail around the social world, jumping in with small comments that make me sound at least half-smart, but I would much rather be able to say them and choose not to, knowing that I would be adding them all up and arrive with something incredibly hysterical later on. Timing is everything, in more than just this small aspect of our existences, and I am afraid, friends, that my time is either yet to come or flew by long ago.
Perhaps when I was in Brighton I missed my chance to really go for it. Perhaps the fear of failure was more daunting for me than ever it was before, perhaps I'm genuinely terrified about what people in the world actually think of me. Perhaps I would much rather be the centre of attention than the star attraction, if you catch my drift.
I will, for now at least, try to be the quiet one. I don't really have anything clever to say for the most part anyway so I may as well sit back, think about things and work out the best line to take when questioned or pushed on any issue. Perhaps I might actually be good in diplomacy, again not because I make the right decisions but instead because I don't make any decisions, and I only formalise opinions once my paycheques have stopped coming and I've attained all the titles I hoped to achieve when setting out my stall.
Like everyone else in government, I'll remain quiet and end up a servant of her majesty's highest honour because I kept my charity private and my profile obscure. I towed the line; I was scared to veer off into the employment wilderness, the public metropolis, and come back stronger, more popular, more loved, more admired and more revered. Because in the end, it's not what people think of themselves but actually knowing that they did as little wrong in their life as possible, that the mistakes they made couldn't be avoided, or they knew would bring with them consequences that they could handle, and in the end would move them to more success in the long run.
But then, everyone's selfish when they can't share a gift. And I can't share laughter, so I'm taking it away from everyone else too.