Saturday, July 21, 2012

Day 17: 100 Things That Make You Happy

Really?! Is this a trick? I hope that I can keep within the framework of this exercise... It was nice to see this upon waking, though, because it put a smile on my face as I went to work, and I actually looked around in my same old work neighborhood anticipating anything that I could add to my list.  That is definitely a first.

And I did find something.... two little boys no more than eleven, still short and scrawny but full of energy, racing each other down the street, stopping at every block to catch their breath. They were probably on their way to summer camp, or swimming lessons, but something about their zeal was fresh and innocent, the brotherly grins on their faces, their regard for each other, stopping at the corner and not daring each other to cross the street into oncoming traffic... all of these things held me in awe because they were genuine. I was looking at two little boys who were kids, not trying to be ghetto hoodlums-in-training, no cussing, no dangerous activities frowned upon by adults, they might as well have had a stick and a tireframe! I know, that's a tad bit nostalgic for a time way before my own, but after hearing countless stories of the boyhoods of my uncles in Guyana, a truly more innocent time.

At one point I began crossing the street and they had stopped gasping for breath, readying themselves for the next jaunt, and I casually said to one of them, "tie your shoelaces", and he actually acknowledged what I said! I kept going, smiling as I saw him bend down while his friend waited. They knew the value of what I was saying, especially in relation to their present activity, so it was heeded with natural ease. After that, every block they reached they gave me the slightest regard as I caught up on my measured walk to work. I kept a smile on my face, truly happy that I could have had such an interaction on that particular day.

Usually I bristle if someone tells me to "smile", like an imperative thrown haphazardly, out of context, with a presumed intimacy that feels intrusive on my person. Just because I am walking down the street and you observe me and I don't have a smile pasted on my face doesn't invite you to to directly insist that I change my visage for your approval. Why do you feel the need to project whatever you are feeling onto me and then require a mirror reflecting back at you. It would be one thing if the man (and it's always a man doing this) would have said, "good morning", like the gentleman of the South do. That might have illicited a more natural regard and response from me. But no. Does this go on in Germany, or Peru? Do men walk down the street telling women to smile? They most certainly say good morning or otherwise acknowledge each other. What is the cultural significance of that particular behavior? Do Black men tell women of other races to smile in New York City? In Brooklyn? As often? Anyway.....

100 things that make me happy....
1- Birds singing, especially exotic sounding ones that I am surprised to hear in the city. There is one particular bird that I must track down and find out what it is, because I am pretty sure it looks unassuming, and then emits this magical mesmerizing call that always stops me in my tracks.
2- Farmer's Markets
3- The Urban Farming Renaissance
4- Knowledge that my mother and grandparents were beekeepers- ushering in a lifecycle not often considered, but is indeed vital to every eating "higher" being on this planet for millenia!
5- The possibility of great journeys and adventures, whether I see it yet or not
6- Laughter, explosive, unhindered glee
7- Colors
8- Textures
9- The abillity and the desire we all share to hug and have human contact
10- Something to write on
11- Something to write with (mind, fingers, pens, paintbrushes, toes! eyes! breath! etc!)
12- Essential Oils
13- Herbs
14- Beads and everything that goes into making jewelry
15- Recipes
16- Good food, healthy and not-so-healthy
17- Fruits!
18- Vegetables!
19- Ancient grains!
20- Olfactory paradise
21- Foreign countries
22- Foreign languages
23- Animalia
24- Plants
26- The deep sea
27- Well Made Clothes
28- All amazing aspects of physical Earh
29- TREES!!!!!!
30- Progressive, uplifting science
31- A good cup of tea
32- Cats
33- Dogs
34- Books
35- Music that rocks me and makes me want to sing out loud
36- Friends old and all-of-a-sudden
37- Mysteries
38- Word puzzles
39- Interactive games
40- Hiking
41- Biking
42- Swimming
43- Old-schoolin'
44- Singing!
45- Dancing!
46- Clever debate
47- Storytelling
48- Poetry
49- Magic
50- My Strange Black Hair
51- Microscopes
52- Great Sex
53- Freedom
54- Natural cosmetics
55- Lingerie for Me!
56- Innovation in the Black Community
57- Thrifting!
58- Old couples that still are happy with and enwrapped in each other.
59- Fathers with their children and loving it
60- Happy couples of mixed origins
61- Learning a new creative capacity in myself
62- Being confident to teach something to others
63- Being able to help others
64- Being able to give others wisdom
65- Being able to accept and internalize wisdom from others
66- Knowing when I can walk away with no regrets
67- Silliness
68- Smiling babies
69- Being able to relate to small children and remember that I had a small childhood
70- Open mindedness
71- Peaceful spirituality
72- Chocolate
73- Irreverence
74- Comedy
75- Artistic Drama
76- Ancient architecture
77- Great Companionship/Mate for life's journeys
78- Nerds
79- Confident Sexuality
80- Yoga and Pilates
81- Spices
82- Environmental Preserves
83- The ability ot create and appreciate Art
84- Confidence in my justness of being
85- The myriad possibilities of Beauty
86- Films
87- Photography
88- Family celebrations
89- The knowledge that my family is vast, varied and available
90- The promise of my niece
91- Parents that haven't given up on me
92- The capacity to not give up on my family
93- That I have sisters (but a brother would have been nice!)
94- Travelling
95- Meeting people from far away places
96- The Color(s) Purple
97- Alice Walker's writings
98- My brown complexion
99- Genuineness
100- Compassion

The 100

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