Happiness 2.0

Since the time my friend has introduced me to the song – Happy, by Pharrell Williams, I’ve been conflicted, in some ways.

It’s not so much about the song as much as about the music video. There are people in the video who are dancing (and prancing) all along the video. It’s a great way of expressing your happiness, I will concede, yet I am unable to relate to the video. The song? Yes. I like the beat, more so, because you cannot ignore what it makes you feel.

This post is marked version 2, for a reason. I wrote about Happiness a few years ago. I didn’t post it then, but what I saw on that day in 2007 is the photograph that you see below. No reason or rhyme, but I was really HAPPY that day!

The following post may turn out to be old wine in new bottle, but we do not know – here goes.

Lone Tree- Split-toning

My happiest times have been when I am with my friends. I will not say family. Because the folks in my family with whom I have shared the happiest moments are my friends. You spend a few years in life, and the line that separates friends and family gets blurred. A wise man once said, “Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof.”

Don’t worry about it now, you’ll know when you get to the age that I am.

While I cannot dance, and perhaps that is the reason, I have never felt like “dancing-out my happiness.” Not that dancing-out your happiness is a wrong expression, please note.

Love was the first victim; I feel happiness may be the second, of how commerce will appropriate our feelings: first for their advantage and then to dictate how our feelings should be expressed. Products and services aren’t sold on the basis how how good they are; they are sold on the basis of exploiting our senses of how we feel. By itself, there’s nothing wrong associating an instant noodle with a core human emotion; I take umbrage that it potentially tells us how we live our emotions. [An Example – YouTube Video of a Nestlè ad] Should personified cuteness be banned? I don’t think so. There is so little that we can do to capture happiness in a one-minute TV spot. The problem occurs, not when it becomes famous, and we have a million likes, but when we think that is the personification of happiness (or any other happy emotion, e.g.).

The extent of our experience of happiness is un-capturable. How, when, where and in what manner we experience it, is beyond any creative director’s comprehension. First because the manners are so many, and second because the manner is so myriad. So, we should not succumb to the narrowed celluloid expressions of what’s nice. While they are specific expressions, our own meanings and experiences should matter much more.

Sometimes,

we smile without reason, staring at our computer screens on a late Tuesday afternoon
we imagine non-existent people in the space we occupy and we have a laugh with them
we escape an ongoing conversation and feel blessed to be here
we wonder, without a trigger, what a wonderful life we are living

and, many such instances.

The best feeling of all, is when love envelopes you at 4:00PM on a Thursday and you can almost feel that you might explode. Ah, well.

If and when possible, we have to cherish these moments, for they are the true markers of the life that we are living. And with equal strength, we have to let them go, so that more such new instances are possible. Happinesses are ephemeral; there’s no clinging. It’s like, you have just one slot of happiness and you have to keep clearing it out to make way for new ones.

And how we celebrate that new occupant in the slot, is all up to us. No one can tell us how it should be. Not a cute ad, not your friend’s happy-status on Facebook.

I think, I’ll go do a funky dance and I’ll leave you with this. Enjoy! Be happy – In your own way!

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