But surely laughing at the expense of a fool is not a very nice thing to do? Surely Schadenfreude, as the Germans call joy at someone else’s misery, is something to be discouraged, and certainly not given its own day of celebration? A brain-scanning study showed that Schadenfreude activates brain regions associated with feelings of pleasure, while another study suggested that the feeling of Schadenfreude might be associated with the production of oxytocin – the hormone released in pleasurable acts of social bonding, such as kissing, sex, and child-caring. So rather than denouncing April Fool’s Days, celebrate its potential benefits. The laughter might not only make you healthier, but more creative too.
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