The Picture of Happiness

What is happiness?

Is it the absence of sadness? The presence of contentment? Freedom from mental illness?

When I was in graduate school over a decade ago, I had a professor who frequently said:

Happiness is not a hot dog

I have pondered the meaning of that statement ever since.  Does it mean that hot dogs really aren’t that delicious? That the pleasure you get from eating a hot dog isn’t real happiness? That happiness cannot be achieved in the consumption of material things?  It remains a mystery.

In the interest of unraveling that mystery, I am dedicating the month of May to learning more about happiness. I have invited colleagues, friends and family to contribute pictures of what makes them happy – even if the happiness gained is only momentary.  They couldn’t send pictures of kids, pets or lovers – that’s too easy! But had to come up with other things that made them glow with pleasure.  I can’t wait to see what they come up with!

In the meantime I will be looking for the one thing that makes me the happiest.  Here are a couple runner – ups:

I took this photo while at the top of a ladder and holding the camera over my head. Is there anything happier than robin's eggs?

I took this photo while at the top of a ladder and holding the camera over my head. Is there anything happier than robin’s eggs?

The are few things that make me happier than paddling a canoe or kayak.

The are few things that make me happier than paddling a canoe or kayak.

Weddings: The bring me happiness. So do white shoes, good photography and lace

Weddings bring me happiness. So do TOMS shoes, good photography and the color white.

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