Tag Archives: unhappiness

The Exigencies of Life

You’re born, you live, then you die. What could be simpler?


And what exactly is needed?

That depends, actually very little is needed to accomplish being born, living and dying. It can all be done in very short order. Being happy might take a bit longer. A great Dane said, “Aye, there’s the rub.” Shakespeare actually, but he has a great Dane say it. Victor Borge used to say that when he first arrived in the US they referred to him as a great Dane. He didn’t know how they could mistake him for a dog. Nautical BBQ enthusiasts might also say that. It is indeed the rub and the smoke that makes it taste soo good.


Being happy is an internal state. As an individual you decide how happy you are. It really isn’t the externals. You can’t buy happiness, and it isn’t even for rent. Likewise, you can’t force someone to be unhappy. That’s where people like to argue. They don’t challenge the statement about buying happiness, but they don’t accept that unhappiness is internal also. Back in the 80’s there was a guy in Iowa that killed two cops, T-Bone Taylor. He was convicted and sent to prison. Several years later a reporter for the local paper looked him up, he was in a prison in a different state. He told the reporter how much he loved prison life. He went on and on about different privileges he had. The newspaper printed it, and the letters to the editor poured in. People were pissed. A short time later the prison warden wrote a letter to the paper to let people know that this guy had lied. He never had all the privileges he claimed to have. He probably was happy though. Happy because his story had pissed off so many people. You can’t force happiness, you can’t force misery. You can do things to make either more likely, but the emotional state of someone else is not subject to others control. I’m sure parents and authority figures have run into individuals that are very difficult to punish. A child’s punishment should be an attempt to teach them safety or empathy. Don’t do that because “You’ll shoot your eye out.”, or don’t do that because you’re hurting others. If you’re dealing with a sociopath you’ll never teach empathy. And you will probably have problems with them for their {or your} whole life. The modern prison system really didn’t start until after the Civil War. In general I think it’s been a real failure. Look at the language used, Penitentiary, Reformatory. How many criminals get reformed by the system? How many criminals are penitent? I think in a lot of cases the prison serves as a school on how to be a bigger criminal. Some people do turn their life around, I think that is in spite of the system not because of it.


You can’t force someone to love you. You can’t force someone to hate you. You can’t force someone to be happy. You can’t force them to be unhappy. You can’t use the point of a gun to convert their religion. You can kill them and you can exile them, but that isn’t necessarily changing their mind. Remember what Dr House says, “Everybody lies.”


If you’re Happy and you know it, clap your hands……