Humor in Norfolk


If you look at the history of Norfolk, you will see that it has been invaded a few times. First the British owned it. Then the uppity Americans took it from them. A few years later the Confederacy took over. Then the Union took it back.

Yesterday it was invaded again, this time by some cartoonists from the National Cartoonists Society.

Invading cartoonists augmented by humorist Dr. Joel Goodman (on the right)

As part of its continuing partnership with the Navy and military medicine, the cartoonists (Jeff Bacon, Mason Mastroianni, Bruce Higdon and Paul Fell) from the National Cartoonists Society, along with humor expert Dr. Joel Goodman, visited wounded, injured and ill troops the Naval Hospital in Portsmouth and later drew for the crew of USS JAN JACINTO (CG 56).

I can’t speak for the hapless victims (each of whom received personalized artwork), but the cartoonists and Dr. Goodman had a blast. They all were there as part of a developing partnership with BUMED to use humor as an operational stress mitigator. Many studies have been conducted that show that humor actually has a healing effect with ailing patients and those who operate in a stressful environment – something the cartoonists have witnessed first-hand over the last several years.

All those studies may be true, but the overall consensus by the invading cartoonists is that the visits were a blast. The troops were – as usual – incredibly impressive and upbeat. Thanks to the staff at the hospital and the Captain and crew of SAN JACINTO for all the hospitality!

And as a famous general once said when he left a place he would one day invade again, we shall return.


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