We cannot escape the happy. Not that we would want to, but think about all the happy that is forced upon us by our own culture on almost a daily basis…and yet many people are not happy. Our heaping helpings of happy start with Happy New Year, then perhaps Happy Birthday, followed by Happy Valentine’s Day. Oops, almost forgot to toss in Happy Ground Hog Day (yes there are cards for that). We move on to Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Happy Easter, Happy Mother’s Day, Happy Father’s Day, Happy Grandparents Day, Happy Fourth of July, Happy Anniversary, …with perhaps a break in September unless one wants to wish a happy back to school day to someone, or happy Labor Day,….then back on track for Happy Halloween, Happy Thanksgiving and the bane of us all, Happy Holidays as if we need to encompass any events left off the happy train.
But somehow we are also to be merry….eat drink and be merry…. Merry Christmas (which I personally believed was supposed to be me Mary and Christ that somehow got morphed). Nobody says happy marriage or happy wedding day, they say best wishes, good luck or congratulations as if the union was a feat accomplished and it comes with a warning label. We say happy graduation but then wish people luck or best wishes or congrats. As if to say “Yeah, now what are you going to do with your life?”
There are lots of happy songs, one telling us not to worry, be happy. Others happy to be alive, and if you are happy and you know it…. Have you ever heard “I am happy to report…” or remember that little cartoon called “happiness is…” which went on to spawn an empire of posters, books and tchotchkes?
Don’t forget the book titles “Happy to be-----“encompassing whatever that author was identifying with at the time. Of course when patriotic moments roll around, good, bad or symbolic, we all stand up and claim to be happy to be an American, which I truly am so I am happy to be on board with that one.
So why do so many people claim to be unhappy? Do they feel some type of pressure to measure up to all this happiness being wished upon them? Are table servers really “happy” to take my order? Don’t you just wish that one time you could answer them with “are you really? Does asking me what I want to eat make you happy?” Of course then I would probably have to happily excuse myself to the restroom and the hand blower thingy to dry my lap. That would not be great. That would not lead to my having a great day which is what I hear a lot too. Have a great day! If I do go on to have a great day would that make you happy? Maybe I am only wished a good day by someone who is happy to get rid of me.
Almost missed our custom known happy hour…which is never just an hour… the happy is anywhere from 2 to 6 hours or so with happier prices, happier little foods and maybe happier people (or happy cops). I guess I should just wrap this up with reminding us all to be happy to help, happy to listen, and happy to be of service which should make every day a happy one for somebody else….oh yeah, Happy New Year.