Monday, March 28, 2011

Some Things That Make Me Happy No Matter What

So lately I've had a few experiences that have made me really ponder on the existence and acquisition of true happiness. More often than not when I think about or discuss this subject I cite Abraham Lincoln's quote, "Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be," and after a brief discussion about deciding to be happy I'm satisfied and can continue on with my life. I definitely agree with Abe's statement, but not in the way I used to. I used to think that you could just make up your mind to be happy and that was all it took, but it's not. The daily decisions we make lead us to true happiness. That's the essence of agency, choosing those things that will make us truly happy. In Abe's words, as we make up our minds to do things that bring happiness, we'll be happy.

That's enough of my soapbox on happiness. Aside from the previous discussion on choosing things that bring deep and abiding happiness, there are little things in life that sprinkle glimpses of joy into my life no matter what. More often than not they aren't big paradigm-shifting decisions, just a little tasty life-spice now and then. Here follows a list (by no means comprehensive) of a few things that have this effect:

-Chasing thunderstorms in the summer time
-Being told that I look or act like my brother David
-Going down to the shore of Utah Lake at night and looking up at the stars. or out across the water, or at the stars reflected in the water, and contemplating life, the universe and everything
-Running to stand still
-Running to stand still
-Writing down choice bits of conversations that I overhear
-Smiling big at little kids in the MOA so that they go tell their parents about the tall, funny looking security guard and then looking all stern and serious when the parents look around at me
-Seeing the reaction when I tell someone I can fit 10 quarters up my nose
-Finishing a crossword puzzle
-Seeing the reaction when I put 10 quarters up my nose
-Daffodils, both the poem and the flower
-Looking up Ecuador on Google Earth
-Waking Ned Devine
-Michael O'Sullivan
-Being able to watch BYU lose and not get upset about it (I've been working hard on this one)
-Sitting in my Spanish class and chatting with Chad via email about how much we hate the class
-Playing the Wikipedia game
-Speed Scrabble
-Hiking mountains, especially early in the morning before the sun comes up
-Rice King
-This talk
-Reading my siblings' facebook statuses
-Waking up in the morning in my bed and realizing that I did in fact make it to my bed the night before
-Symphony No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 78 "Organ": IV. Maestoso - Allegro by Camille Saint-Saens
-Shooting hoops down by the train tracks late at night
-Mom's cherry pie (hands down best dessert in the world and yes I will fight you about that one)
-Validation that I made the right decision to drop Physics in favor of English
-My Name is Asher Lev, To Kill A Mockingbird, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Great Expectations, and Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are

That's enough to be getting on with for now.


  1. Thanks, Sam. You're a good man.

  2. Good job. Running to Stand Still. I appreciate the way you utilized that phrase twice to describe things that I love so much with all my heart too.

  3. Good. All of it. Although, I think my favorite is the way you act like a sneaky old man to kids in the MOA. (: