You Can’t Make Everyone Happy


You're Not a Taco


New month. Same me.


That’s okay. Today I’m meditating on the fact that I can’t make everyone happy. Sometimes that may mean I can’t quite make me happy. At my best, I can ride out those times until a different day comes along and I am able to cajole myself to joy. Those days truly are the best.


For now, for today, I will do my best to simply be. To try to enjoy friends and loved ones. To see art and to let it wash over me. And maybe, just maybe, to have a taco. Tacos really are pretty freaking perfect.




Sometimes, for no reason at all, I become depressed. That depression can be debilitating or merely annoying. It can break me in body and spirit, or it can challenge me to break it. Sometimes, for no reason at all, I’m filled with joy. That joy can be the kind that’s bubbly and giggly. Or it can simply be quiet and smiley. The latter is the type of joy that struck me yesterday and it was lovely.


If I wanted to decipher my happiness, I could point to avoiding the news as a source. Or maybe the long walk from yesterday morning. The nachos I had for lunch could deserve some of the credit. But I’m not in the deciphering mood. I am merely content. Content to go about my business. Content to handle life, at least for today. And because I know how good the joyful moments are, I’m grateful.


Sometimes, for no reason at all, I become depressed. Thankfully, today is not one of those days.

I Feel Good



Yesterday I woke with a smile. There in the dark, completely content to face a Monday, I felt good. And I said as much, right out loud. Only I didn’t say it. I sang it.


There’s this musician dude, Freebo, and he’s got a song called “Sometimes It’s For Nothin’.” A lot of folks refer to the song as “I Feel Good” because those words are repeatedly repeated in the chorus. Anyone who’s ever seen Freebo live will tell you how infectious this song can be. The whole audience gets to wailing along with him, and I swear. By the time that song is over, you do feel good.


Freebo is a sweet guy and though our paths have not crossed for quite a while, I do think of him fondly from time to time. And almost always, those thoughts are triggered by the lyrics “I feel good.” Yesterday morning was lovely. And I did feel good.


I also sent peaceful thoughts to Freebo. I send good thoughts to various people all the time. Sometimes those notions are in the form of prayer. Sometimes not. When I imagine folks receiving my good intentions, I picture them smiling. I don’t insert myself into the scene, though, as there’s no need for friends and loved ones to credit me in any way, shape or form. I don’t need to be part of their joy or happiness. That’s theirs. My only hope in focusing on the well-being of another is that they actually connect with themselves and revel in that moment. Just seeing that in my mind causes me to smile. And maybe that’s the point of well-wishing. Maybe sending kind thoughts to another actually increases kindness within the sender. And if my kindness for myself flares, mightn’t I be more likely to spread that around as I go about my day? And isn’t it possible that I might make someone else’s day, if only in passing? It’s lovely to imagine life that way.


So yes. I felt good yesterday. And while Freebo wasn’t the cause of my feelings, his music certainly did reflect my morning joy. I’d say that was plenty good reason to send Freebo excellent vibes. Hope he felt them.

Monday, Monday



A week ago, I started Monday with a carryover of Sunday’s blues. It wasn’t the best.


But today is a new Monday, a new week. And I feel new as well. I didn’t do anything extraordinary over the weekend. It was what some might call boring. I stayed home all weekend, spent time with Mister (who had a summer cold), watched the wrap-up of the Rio Olympics games and chilled. And it couldn’t have been lovelier.


One gift of age, for me, is recognizing who I truly am and honoring her. I don’t always succeed on those fronts, but when I do, I experience true happiness, right down to my core. Those moments are beautiful and I love them. Not to imply that I’m completely content in life, because that isn’t true. I still want to scale mountains and achieve personal goals. It’s just that I’m not unhappy in the meantime. And I attribute my relative joy in life to knowing myself. It has made a tremendous difference for me, and I kind of feel like I’ve only just begun. Considering I could be dreading my age and all it entails, I feel pretty darned grateful for being so positive and smiley about the whole scene.


So here’s to Monday and this blank canvas of a week. I can see a few hills before me. Mountains, maybe. No time like the present to start climbing…

What Lies Beneath



The other day I was scraping old caulk from the kitchen sink. I’d been living with ugly caulk for quite a while, and no amount of bleach had made the slightest improvement. It was a pain-in-the-ass job, but one that had to be tackled. My fingers nearly fell off, but I got the scraping done and re-caulked the mutha. In much the same way that taping takes most of one’s time when painting, scraping took more time than the actual caulking. And when I was finished, the sink looked like, well, like a non-ebola-infested sink is supposed to look.


Later, it occurred to me that some jobs result in obvious change, while others do not. Take the big blue wall in the rumpus room, for example. That beauty is still turning my head. Honestly, I have no idea how long it will take for me to get used to it. The kitchen sink, on the other hand, is just a sink. I know I put in a lot of time toward cleaning up its appearance, but now I don’t even notice it. It’s just a clean sink with clean caulk lines. I appreciate it and all, but it definitely doesn’t turn my head.


I guess life is like that some times. Certain moments are more striking than others. Some occurrences are all jazz-hands and such. Others – not so much. But it doesn’t mean the others aren’t important. It just means our eyes don’t necessarily notice what lies beneath. And that’s okay. I know that having a clean sink makes me happy, even if I don’t know why. And happy, friends, is a very big deal.

5/12 Done



Today marks the last day of the 5th month of the year. That means we’re mighty close to being halfway through 2014. Can you believe it?


When we were kids, grown-ups used to tell us how much faster time flies once you’re an adult. Did we believe them? No. Personally, I remember more than one eye-rolling incident, where I thought my eyeballs had rolled so hard back into my head that they’d get stuck. That odd physical feeling did nothing to convince me those grown-ups were correct about time.


But now I’m an adult. And I freely admit to understanding exactly what those folks of long ago were trying to tell us kids. It does go faster. Time flies even. And I’m totally okay with that, because I think that means I’m – dare I say it – happy. Unhappy slows a clock like nobody’s business. Happy seems to have the opposite effect.


Let’s make it count! It’s the last day of May! Here’s a toast to happy, flying time!

Muscle Memory



I painted last night, and I am happy to report I have re-acclimated to the studio environment.


After last week, I was wondering. But last night found me comfortable with the brush and the paints. I was able to relax and just enjoy it. It felt like my muscle memory kicked in.


At one point, my teacher said something about how I have a tendency to complicate my paintings. He didn’t mean anything cruel, he was just telling the truth. The painting I’m working on now is a city-scape, with lyrics painted across it. My teacher’s comment was directly aimed at my choice to “complicate” the painting of Los Angeles by having to get those danged words just right.


What-evs. I was just happy to be back to my detail-oriented self. I was happy my buddy Nicole was there (and working on a stunning portrait, I might add). I was happy just to be there.


I was happy.