A Happiness Weapon


In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play.
Friedrich Nietzsche

It’s an engrained habit of mine to prefer being the one who drives. I get bored easily on the passenger side. But that changed last weekend. Giving up control has never been more fun.

Someone one else was driving and the day was a stellar fall Saturday afternoon; cool but not cold with beautiful sunny skies. Windows were down and the breeze through the moving car window was strong, but felt good. It had been many, many years since I had last done what came next.

Long had I forgotten the pleasure of flying my hand like an airplane out an open car window. If I tipped my finders up, my hand would fly upwards. Moving them down made my hand dive. To one side or the other caused movement in that direction.

The speed the pickup was moving was fast enough that the air whipping past the vehicle could almost completely support my hand. It was a wonderful near-weightless feeling I enjoyed while flying my “hand-plane” down the road.

I lost myself in the moment, paid little attention to the scenery and barely heard the driver’s voice when she asked, “Are you having fun?”. I replied “Lots” and went right back to enjoying my regression to the wonders of childhood for the next five miles.

Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon. A happiness weapon. A beauty bomb. And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one. It would explode high in the air – explode softly – and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air. Floating down to earth – boxes of Crayolas. And we wouldn’t go cheap, either – not little boxes of eight. Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in. With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest. And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination. Robert Fulghum

Call me childish if you want. I’ll take it as a compliment. This weekend I am going to buy a coloring book, a big box of crayons and a box to keep them in. On the days I feel depressed or down, when life is heavy, at times when a tough decision is weighing me down or a dose of feel-good fun is needed I will pull out my little therapy box and ‘color’. In those moments the good times of childhood will be let lose within to bring me back to what life is for: TO BE ENJOYED. I will be a thousand times better when the little boy is laughing within me again, having fun and centered in ‘now’. I am grateful he is alive within me.

Happy is he who still loves something
he loved in the nursery.
He has not been broken in two by time;
he is not two men, but one,
and he has saved not only his soul but his life.
G.K. Chesterton