Let's go back in time about 8 years or so, to Mr. Selinger's 11th grade chemistry class. So we're sitting there, vaguely paying attention to him telling us about the lab we're going to do. I don't remember what we were making, except that theoretically it could be edible. But Mr. Selinger told us not to eat what we made, because it contained phenolpthalene, which is an ingredient in exlax. I just started cracking up, and the class turned and stared at me. Later that class, he said "exlax" again, and I cracked up again. I thought that perhaps this would be an amusing incident for the day, a running class joke at the most.
Boy, was I wrong.
Within a couple days, people in school were coming up to me and saying "exlax!" And of course, I would crack up. Even people who weren't in that class. My friends caught on. And they told our other friends. And every time a new friend came along, they would soon find out. Same with family. I also made the mistake of letting it slip when I got to college. I don't remember if I told one person or a few, but soon all my friends were saying "exlax" to see my reaction. I don't know why everyone finds this so amusing, or why I even crack up at the word (these days, it seems to be a conditioned response). But now everyone and their mother knows that "exlax" makes me laugh.
Of course, it's not the only word that cracks me up. I recall the Golem meeting about 5 years ago when we were sitting there quietly, listening to Jess read her poem, and I totally killed the peaceful poeticness by snickering at the word "nipples."
Megan combined the two words to make "niplax." This also succeeds in cracking me up. Actually, I laugh at pretty much everything, even at the most inappropriate times. Ah, my warped sense of humor is no secret from anyone. This shall haunt me forever. 70 years from now, a nurse will be wheeling me down the hall of my nursing home, and we'll pass another old fart, who'll raise his cane to me and say "exlax!" And I will cackle, even though I won't remember why it's funny or even what exlax is. And then I'll have a heart attack from laughing too hard and die. See? This will be the death of me someday. Death by exlax. But not in the yucky way.
Also, a few years ago, one of my friends went back to the high school and saw Mr. Selinger. She asked if he remembered me, and he said, "Oh yeah... exlax." Ah, the legacy I have left...