Skip to main content
heard you were looking for something deadly!

Around the table by Shaneeka Forrester

Around the table by Shaneeka Forrester

I grew up in the bustling city of Toronto, Ontario. Our home was always a meeting place for my parents’ friends, my siblings’ friends, and my friends as well.  We would gather around the dining room table and share stories about our day. The coffee pot could be heard from the kitchen sputtering and steaming away as it prepared to fuel the next conversation. A cloud of smoke swirled above the dining room table gathers the laughter of everyone below and carries it through the house. My father sat in his usual spot at the head of the table, eyes watering with tears as he stomps his foot against the linoleum floors howling with joy. Heads thrown back with mouths open as they contributed their voice to the howls.

changed Sometimes the conversations included tears from the hardships of a tough day. Sometimes the conversations were in tones of anger because someone had acted out, but regardless of the convesations that came and went, the people that came and went, we always knew that the laughs were never far away.

For me Indigenous Humour has impacted my life by helping me see humour as a way to connect with people from all walks of life. I have been fortunate to witness the power that humour has in our communities in the darkest of times and I’ve been able to turn to humour in mine, as well. As I got older the dynamics of my family changed and I was introduced to humour from new communities. I got to see how they bantered with one another– a ping pong game of lighthearted insults that nobody was safe from. I began to learn how to laugh at myself and not take things too seriously. 

In recent years, I’ve seen community members pass away and its always a hard time watching our community grieve those losses. During those times one of my favourite traditions is when people gather and share the most embarrassing and funny stories they can think of about that person, and everyone howls with laughter. For me, Indigenous Humour is about finding the funny in the unfortunate, laughing about really uncomfortable things as a way to cope, and being able to identify people by the sound of their laughter. Indigenous Humour impacted my life in nearly every interaction I have because it is so deeply intertwined with the way we communicate and walk on this earth. After we leave this world, and our spirits are called back home, our laughter will continue to echo out into the physical world; it echoes through stories about us and the retelling of jokes we have told. 

Shaneeka Forrester is Cree from Brunswick House First Nation. Shaneeka grew up in the Greater Toronto Area and spent many years being involved in the Urban Indigenous community in Toronto. Shaneeka went to George Brown College where she pursued an education in Child and Youth Work. Shaneeka then went on to begin studying Indigenous art at OCADU but left early to begin her journey as a full-time Mom. In 2016 Shaneeka relocated to Barrie, ON to raise her two sons. She spends her days creating art while advocating for Indigenous Equity and Awareness in her community.

You can find Shaneeka here:
Instagram:  Shneeks.beadz


Continue reading

Ever Sick, Stefan!

Ever Sick, Stefan!


Jay Melanson

Sometimes forget the hilarious moments we had. As the father of four mischevious daughters I am forever reminded that nothing was safe from their humorous interpretation.

All comments are moderated before being published.

Your Cart

Your cart is currently empty.
Click here to continue shopping.
Thanks for contacting us! We'll get back to you shortly. Thanks for subscribing Thanks! We will notify you when it becomes available! The max number of items have already been added There is only one item left to add to the cart There are only [num_items] items left to add to the cart