Happy People have Scars
It has been a bit since we fired up the rant page and let fly with some deep ruminations and wild ramblings. Life is busy as hell getting the new newsletter project off the ground and writing the normal daily compliment of articles, and dealing with just regular old everyday stuff. Kids have to get to school, hot steamy piles of dog shit must be picked up while walking around the neighborhood, wine has to be drunk in great quantity, dinner has to be made and baseball must be watched. All of this has not left much me to attend to church affairs and deliver proper sermons and demented commentary. This must be fixed and I shall now endeavor to do so.
I have sent a fair amount of time lately thinking about happiness and the relative meaning and implications therein. People obsess over fucking Happiness. I got tickets to see Joe Dumbass in concert, I am so happy. I didn’t get a raise I am so unhappy. I am going through a divorce I am so (pick one ) happy/unhappy. The Pope said I can be gay and have an abortion I am so happy. The Mets sucked again this year I am so happy (I am. Omid is downright fucking miserable out there on Long Island). Everyone wants to be happy but no one can tell you just what the hell happy is exactly.
Whole reams of literature written about happiness so let’s fire up the quote machine , pick a few at random examine in some details this while idea of happiness. We both know I am not going to do this randomly but pick the ones that make my points and create some thought but it’s my damn church and my damn page so you will just have to along with me here.
Research has shown that the best way to be happy is to make each day happy
I included this one just so I could comment on what a dickhead Deepak Chopra really is. He blocked me on twitter last year when I asked me to teach me how to make millions spouting meaningless touchy feely crap to stupid people. The above sentence sounds deep and spiritual but does not mean a fucking thing. If we knew how to make each day happy we wouldn’t spend all this time worrying about being happy. Now that I have that out of my system let’s move along shall we?
Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.
Hemingway is spot on with this. It is so damn easy for dumb people to be happy. They don’t know shit and could care less about the state of the world. They do not understand economics so they have no clue we are dancing on the edge of collapse. They pay no attention to geopolitics so the idea that Syria could easily flare into WWIII never even occurs to them. Jesus loves them, beer is cold dinner is at 7 and they are happy about it all.
We smarter folks however, tend to worry about shit. We know about the cruelty of humanity, the futility brought on by mortality. We think deep thoughts about the meaning of it all and our inability to reconcile any sort of meaning with fixing dinner and hot steamy piles of dog shit leaves us frustrated. We know we need a good credit rating so we sit up nights worrying about jobs and bills and all the crap. We know that we have to save for the future and that the world could end at any time. When you are smart enough to look around the world with open eyes there’s tons of shit to worry about and it keeps us from being happy.
Somehow you have to use that intelligence to realize that some things you can fix and some things you cant. If you can fix it do so. If you cannot, ignore it. I find wine helps with this.
Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all
This from Ovid ties in somewhat with the above. People worry too god damn much. I have spent hours, days and weeks worrying about all kinds of shit that never happened. Deal with it when it happens. If there is something you can do to stop it from happening then do so. If there is something you need to do to prepare for it then do so. Otherwise wait until something actually fucking happens before you get all worked about it. Wine solves far more problems than worry.
The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.
As usual the esteemed Mr. Franklin nails it in as few words as possible. No one else is going to make you happy. The government cannot make you happy no matter what they promised during the campaign. You can be happy with your lover but they cannot make you happy. The church can’t make you happy no matter how much you believe in life everlasting and God becoming wine and cookies on Sunday mornings. No matter how many infidels you kill in the name of god being a believer on its own cannot make you happy. No other person or thing on this planet can make you happy. Only you can do that.
What will make you happy? Living in Florida? Move then. A new job? Start figuring how to get one. Kids? Get knocked up. Writing the great American novel? Go start writing. What is that will make you happy? Go fucking do it.
You cannot protect yourself from sadness without protecting yourself from happiness
I didn’t much like his book but author Jonathan Safran Foer get this right. If you spend all your life trying not to get hurt, trying not to fail, or trying to avoid pain you may succeed. You will definitely never fall wildly and passionately in love or know the long slow burn of staying in love with someone. You might not ever fall off the cliff but you will never get to the summit either. To be happy you have to risk and even embrace the chance of failure, tears and pain to discover the joy and happiness that the universe holds. Happy people have scars.
So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself: who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?”
This is a variation of the above but I try to quote Hunter Thompson as much as possible as he is one the great philosophers, and clueless individuals of all time. He was also pretty good at picking against the point spread but that’s for another time. Although hitting a 10 point dog on a last second field goal is a pretty fucking happy event if you have a pile on it. Nothing, good, bad or indifferent is going to happen while you stand on the shores of life playing with your pecker and wishing you weren’t afraid. Get a fucking about and get going. Risk the storm. Happy people have scars.
We can do this all night but it is time to start drinking and watch some baseball. Happiness is a mindset. Its liking yourself enough to love you. As John Prine advised us It’s a Big Old Goofy World. There is good shit and bad shit. It’s up to you to make to make it what you will Its taking some risks to get where you want in life. Figure out what makes you happy. Quit fucking whining about not being happy and go be happy. Remember all this Iggy or Zippy or whoever the fuck the little pinhead fat guy cartoon character was? I hate those things but there lots of reasons to be happy in life so lets just run over a few and call it a night.
Hemingway, the Rolling Stones, a long slow kiss, Stags Leap Cab, The Mets Losing, a child succeeding, John Coltrane, Robert Parker, Johnny Unitas, a wedding ring, Snoopy, your son hitting a double down the line to win the game in the final inning, a daughters dance recital, a wife’s kiss in the morning, Brooks Robinson, Sleeping in on Saturday, driving too fast on an empty road, peanut butter sandwiches, a rum buzz at 1 in the afternoon, great sex, Shakespeare, good sex, Milton, Miles Davis, bad sex, medium rare rib eyes, Pinot Noir, John Irving, Sunsets, fast boats, slow boats, pennant baseball, a stock that doubles, friends, friends who root for really bad teams, John Lee Hooker, being clueless about the meaning of life, chicken fried steak, Richard Feynman, chilled Rose, morning sex, solar calculators, Duck Dynasty, alligators, afternoon sex, zombie movies, John Wayne, late night drunken sex, goodbye kisses and welcome home hugs, Mickey Mantle, zinfandel, meatloaf with gravy, The Grateful Dead, Carl Hiassan, beaches,palm trees, bourbon, pelicans, scotch, skinned knees, Pippi Longstocking, a longshot exacta, lounging on the couch, Dr. Seuss, chilled vodka, Jeff Shaara, Yeats, Dylan, gin and tonic in sweaty glasses, wedding trees, first day of school, graduation, Mozart…………………………………………………… and on it goes