Monday, March 17, 2014
Friday, March 7, 2014
1. You’re alive. Congratulations, friend! There was a time – a very long time, actually – when you did not exist. But then, like a freaking miracle you thrust your way into the world, and here you are! You were the little sperm who could. And after that, oh how you thrived! You’ve made it THIS FAR in life and survived it all! You have not been struck by lightning, or hit by a bus, or pushed off a cliff. You are a living, breathing being – and all of your cells and organs, every fiber of your body are constantly working their little microscopic butts off to keep it that way. They’re like trillions of little cheerleaders, all aiming for the same goal: keeping you alive, and happy and healthy. How great is that?
2. You’re human. It’s one thing just to exist, but you get to exist as the DOMINANT SPECIES of planet Earth. In fact, you get to be the only organism capable of pondering your own existence. You do not have to be a single-celled amoeba with no brain function, or a little guppy fish whose only goal in life is not to get eaten. You don’t even have to be a monkey who throws his poop without even knowing why. You get to be a human mother$#%!ing being, which means you can throw your poop and know exactly why. (Nobody else will know, but that’s beside the point.)
3. You can read. Or at least, I’m using deductive reasoning to assume you can read. And you may not have ever devoted any thought to it before now, but in case you weren’t aware: reading is a kinda big deal. One BILLION people in the world – in other words, 26% of the Earth’s adult population – cannot do what you’re doing right now. Which means you are exercising an ability that more than ¼ of your fellow humans do not share. That’s an astonishing fact; don’t take your literacy for granted!
4. More deductive reasoning: You have Internet access. And the Internet is awesome! Sure, it has a dark underbelly just like every other awesome thing… but at its core, the Internet means access to immeasurable amounts of information and worldwide communication. We live in a time when the possibilities of education and human connection are very literally endless. Living in the technological age that we do is a truly incredible thing. Which brings me to…
5. You live RIGHT NOW. Which is really very fortunate, because there is a lot less to worry about than there used to be. Someone already discovered fire and invented the wheel, so that’s one less thing on your to-do list. You do not have to hunt and gather your food. You are not in danger of being sold into slavery. You cannot be denied service or the right to vote based on your gender or the color of your skin. Not all of this was true, even one generation ago.
6. Music exists. And not to sound too much like a hippie, but you guys – music is the best. I don’t even have anything else to say here. If you’re ever feeling unhappy, just hunker down, get a good playlist going and listen to some tuuuuunes, maaannn. A personal favorite of mine is Aqueous Transmission by Incubus, which is a musical achievement so fantastic that according to its Wikipedia page it has generated a “cult-like following,” and Brandon Boyd is quoted as saying that the purpose of the song was to make "the listener pee in his/her pants" from relaxation. If ONE song has that kind of potential, it makes something as trivial as unhappiness seem like nothing a good mix tape couldn’t solve.
7. There are people in this world who love you. Yeah, buddy, YOU! Even if you’re a jerk. Even if you’re Robert Pattinson. Everyone in the whole world is loved. There is all kinds of love flowing toward you, all the time. If you have family, your family loves you. If you have friends, even better! Your friends chose you. Of course they love you. And if you don’t have any family or friends, HEY, I love you. You living, breathing, literate human being you. So take a deep breath, smile, and go find happiness in this big beautiful world of ours.