Friday, January 25, 2008


"The happiest people seem to be those who have no particular cause for being happy except that they are so." - William Ralph Inge

Matt's been sick for the past week and I've now got something similar. I am a horrible, dysfunctional, snotty brat when I'm sick and all I want to do is curl up and die, or whinge about it until someone tells me everything will be okay and I can bite their head off with some sort of drama queen soliloquy. This morning I attempted to write and everything was tainted by my mood (kind women became bitches, charming men adulterers) so I began surfing. I try to avoid this, as one can lose hours immersing oneself into voyeurism. Today, though, I felt happy.

I find it quite silly that happy people are often considered jesters, naive souls who haven't had to deal with the harsh reality of life. I have this game I've played since I was a child where I look random people in the eye and smile at them just to see if they'll smile back. America has the most smilers. Europe, not so much. Responses have ranged from idle grunts to barks and incomprehensible spews of a language I don't know. It's an interesting game. And it passes the time, cause then you can make up stories about why this person you just smiled at is so damn cranky.

Anyway. I save the blogs that people recommend, hoping to find the time to read them one day. So I peeked at a few. And I felt happy. Call them narcissists or self-indulgent, but some people seem to be in cyberspace just to be there, and to offer a different view on this planet we share. Some are witty. Others beautiful. Some share simplicity. Some are sassy. There's something quite cool about this form of self-expression. A large percentage of blogs are long-winded, poorly written drivel, but it's somebody's drivel, and that somebody wanted to say something. It might not change the course of existence, but it might make someone smile.

Other things that make me happy: the energy of a new country as soon as you step off the plane. How sunshine makes marble sparkle. When my cup of tea cools off enough to be drinkable. A really good sneeze. The smell of the air after a Midwestern rainstorm. Telling stories with good friends. Getting an email from an old friend. It's nice finding happiness in the inconsequential. Though perhaps I'm happiest knowing this damn cold will be over soon.
The above photos are from places that make me happy. Top: Lisbon. Middle: Como. Bottom: decaying port advertisement, Obidos, Portugal.


Cate said...

Thank you so much for the lovely compliment! Sassy is a great word. The energy of a new country as soon as you step off the plane is an amazing feeling. I hope to experience it more often!

Take care!


Sandra said...

Just came across your blog and am enjoying rambling around; such wonderful photos and well written, a treat indeed!
Like you, I often smile at people and if they smile back, it's a bonus gift. Who knows what hell someone else is going through? If I can give them a smile, it's enough.
May the worst of 2010 be from the best of 2009!