Happiness is No Horrible News

You know what the news was this week? Good.

There were headlines about purple clothes. Articles about the impact of a beagle on a winning campaign. Bernie Memes. Michelle’s hair. The President did good things, said good things, worked all day, and danced with his toddler grandson. I smiled all week because it felt like I got my country back.

What made you happy this week?

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44 thoughts on “Happiness is No Horrible News

  1. I’m happier because people are not, “going back to the way things were” and are putting pressure on their representatives to end the procedure of filibuster. Leaving it allows this government to be a paper tiger – looks good but no bite i.e. effectiveness. It’ll allow the next fascist to rise in 4 years time, but subtler and more dangerous for it.

    I’m happy because the Disability in Education course is going relatively well and lo, a lady poc in a video. Still mostly re-learning what I already know, but its good to get into the Academia side of things after two and a half years out of it.

    I have signed up and paid for something else (to be revealed when it’s done) and to submit my work will have to create a video channel. Exciting and daunting all at once times.

    I’m slowly reading my non-fiction TBR and I’ve decided to take the pressure off, rather than finish a book in 4 days, the aim is just to finish a book and make notes in my self-study record. I’m using Dr Raul Pachego-Vega’s excel dump method for quotations so if I decide to study a further, I’ve got some of my readings started.

    The doggo is doing much better now that I got his weight up, so that’s really thrilled me. He’s enjoying an ostrich bone for just being a good boy.

    I’m happy that I’m being very slow and steady with anything I do in the garden. I get over-enthusiastic and over-extend myself and then avoid it for days.

    I’m happy that I don’t have to go to work tomorrow and that our unions are fighting for WHO recommended criteria for future school opening. Gods All Bless good unions.

    I’m happy that I have Argh community with these type of prompts. It gives me structure for my reflections.

    1. I don’t think there’s any paywall/restriction to reading The Guardian, is there? You just get ads if you’re not a (financial) supporter or a subscriber.

      1. Yes. Once in a while, they prompt you to register for free but you can simply tick I’ll do it later and it goes away.

      2. I’m registered, but I forget to log in when I follow the link from another site and get the reminder. I thought I’d let people know because it annoys me if I am not forewarned when linking to read.

  2. My daughter got vaccinated with her first shot through her job, and an appointment for the second shot. That made me happy. The first person I know to get it.

  3. I’m happy — not content, mind you. If living is keeping an angle of repose, I feel more sure of my balance after the inauguration.

    A friend’s wonderful, freezing, socially distanced birthday party was the personal highlight of my week, as well as the adding to my calendar of zoom lectures over the next two months.

    Finally, a handyman is going to show up soon — I look forward to having the cabinets open and close and the lights to be brighter.

    I don’t need more happy than that.

  4. I’m happy I switched Italian classes. It is going to be more work, but I was going to stagnate in the other class.

  5. I watched Amanda Gorman deliver her poem at the Inauguration and was entranced at her words and performance. I’m not American but her poem spoke to me about the power of dreams, resilience and hope. As my province is still in lockdown for another two weeks and we are almost 12 months into the pandemic, these critically important ideas.

    I texted a group of friends silly gifs throughout the week. They’re all going through various challenges so it was an easy way to offer encouragement. Plus, I have fun picking out the gif for each person.

    Despite the lockdown, the Horticulture program has been approved to go ahead with on campus labs. We’ve been separated into small groups and will go in every 2 weeks. It’s a bit scary – being with other people and working with power tools – but it’s great to be doing more than learning by Zoom.

  6. Eighty million Americans are really happy this week. The seventy four million disgruntled Americans not so much. Seriously? Look what they have got themselves into.

    Anyway, I’m happy to have two bathrooms because one decided to clog itself, on a Saturday no less.

    I know Arghers have been talking about eye rolling but when did making air quotes start?

    Last, I love the Bernie memes. They can be attached just about anywhere.

    1. Someone popped Bernie into a group of linemen on a high wire, which was promptly posted to my public utility group!

  7. I’m happy every time I remember that we now have a good, competent government. I’m no Pollyanna—the party of death and obstruction can still block a lot that needs to be done—but at least we aren’t being governed by ignorant crazy tweets.

    I’ve got bread rising in the kitchen and a book that needs reading waiting by the couch. It will be a good day.

  8. I’m happy about Wednesday, about democracy winning and powerful women in powerful, colorful coats, and Amanda Gorman lighting up the day with her yellow coat and beautiful words and elegant hands gesturing as she delivered a poem that made America sit up and say, “Wow.”

    I’m happy that our handyman was here for 3 days this week and knocked off our to-do list and a few things we hadn’t thought of, so we’re closer to being ready for the photographer to come take pictures so we can get the house listed next week.

    I’m happy that I’ve rolled over another year on the odometer and that despite all that’s going on ::waves vaguely around:: out there, I’m healthy and ready for what this year brings.

  9. Our dog doesn’t have Lyme disease (has already had it twice)! Her limp has resolved, although it’s darn cold outside.

    Just finished the second draft of my work for hire novel and discovered they show breastfeeding in the Temple of Edfu! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temple_of_Edfu. Not something our guide pointed out when I was there. 😉

    And I’m happy to have science and sanity in the White House while I wait for my vaccine. Our area is not overrun, so I’m being patient.

    1. Apparently you have to ask specifically, or they tactfully omit birth rooms and scenes of nursing. Or maybe it’s exhausting to have to explain that the grown man nursing on the goddess is conveying something other than lunchtime. As my professor said, a LOT of stuff, especially around sacred images, the ancient Egyptians expected the viewer to understand without explaining it in writing on the spot.

  10. Happy to have grownups in the government, surrounding themselves with more grownups, even competent grownups! I enjoyed the whole shebang.

    I took a long walk through the woods with a friend yesterday, and recorded a duet in our old church building. We tried the wear the singing mask, which is like having a great big duck bill on your face. Unfortunately, we actually couldn’t breathe enough air in to sing the phrases, so we stood seven pews apart, re-masked when we weren’t singing, and walked to the other side of the church to depart. Since we were being videoed, I actually put on a dress! Gasp. It felt great.

    We’re towards the end of January, so in Maine we only have 5 more months of winter!

  11. I’m happy that the friend who was exposed to covid at work but didn’t actually get it (masks and handwashing for the win!), and the ninety-five-year old mother of a friend (the mother sort of adopted me as an adult for holidays) tested positive for covid, but remained symptom-free.

    So those are my specific absences of horrible news!

  12. This week their was sunshine: personally and politically.

    We watched the inauguration then I made a Sunday breakfast to celebrate.

    I started weeding the front flowerbeds. I don’t do fall clean up because it gives the earthworms something to chow down on and the self-mulching protects the flowers when it gets cold. Also Christopher Lloyd said if you leave everything to February it all comes up easier (he was right).

    Unfortunately the back door did not close properly one day and the 5 month old kitten unbeknownst to us got out. We eventually discovered this because the senior cat came in and was agitated. He did not get far because it was a little scary but he now thinks he should go out. No. He also has to wear a collar now so if he gets out again, someone doesn’t find him and think he is available for adoption. Happiness is that he is safe.

    But he is back and as adorable as ever.

  13. So happy for the new admin and Bernie memes. The work continues.

    Happy that my group is ok’d for the vaccine. When I schedule, I’m going to have to work around my second pneumonia vaccine shot due in early March. Most of my relatives are covid free or recovered without any real problems. There’s just one cousin we’re concerned about.

    Happy for sunny days. I could do without the wind, though.

    Happy for hot coffee on these chrisp, windy winter days.

  14. Even though it’s not my government, I noticed my stress level dropped a stage on Wednesday. Very glad I don’t have to pay attention to that selfish bully.

    I’m enjoying the day job! The history of architecture and energy is interesting, and I’ve got a book about the golden age of Antwerp to edit after it. Also had two scheduled long chats with friends this weekend, one of which we’re going to make weekly for now.

    ‘The Hands of the Emperor’ made me happy; although by the sequel I could see she really has a problem structuring her stories, which is a pity.

    And this morning I woke up to snow! https://www.instagram.com/p/CKbOG2AHpuk/

  15. Wednesday’s inauguration was a highlight, even though I’m not in the States.

    And today we did a family walk in the snow -as it was snowing big fluffy flakes – that was thoroughly enjoyed by all involved. On our return DS got his first sledging experience (it was a hit) and we made a mini-snowman to go on top of the pillar at the end of our driveway. So we are now a 4 snowman household (3 in the back garden, plus today’s addition). It was magical.

  16. My week started with a lay-off notice from work (not unexpected), moved on to watching your government peacefully transfer power to President Biden, and ended with a job interview and belly laughs at the Bernie memes going around. We are moving from the province of Alberta to my home province of Manitoba, and hoping our house sells soon so we can get going. I was hoping to take a load to our new house, but Manitoba has been under heavy lockdown as the virus infection rate was growing rapidly. The restrictions eased a bit this week, so I can make the move without risking fines. Overall, a very good week especially considering how the past year has gone!

  17. My happy was a new government, not having to frantically check the news every morning (while holding my breath and crossing my fingers…usually followed by screaming at the tv). Plus the inauguration, especially seeing the Obamas again, that fabulous poet, and not having anything horrible happen. And the looks on the faces of our new president and vice president.

    Also the moment when Kamala Harris went to swear in the person who took over her seat, read her own name out loud, stopped, GIGGLED, and said, “That was weird, wasn’t it?” I love that woman. Can you imagine Pence giggling? (Please don’t try. I did, it it hurt.)

    Today my bestie came over and we played Scrabble (masked, and distancing, sitting on two different couches and passing the table back and forth) for the first time since summer. While watching the Dr. Who holiday special. It was good.

  18. The Inauguration and subsequent flurry of positive actions made me happy.
    Being able to unstop my toilet without my landlord’s help made me happy.
    Writing a long essay that I’m pleased about made me happy.
    Finally purchasing a chair mat for the office desk made me happy.
    Eating lunch with a friend yesterday made me happy.
    It’s been a good week!

  19. Besides the Bernie memes, this kind of made my week:

    Random info 😊

    From the NYT – hidden haiku in Abraham Lincoln’s 1861 inaugural address :
    “Though passion may have / strained it must not break our / bonds of affection.”

    And one from Biden’s: “We can join forces / stop the shouting and lower / the temperature.”

  20. Our family lawyer dropped by the house to deal with some stuff related to our mother’s death (in 2018) and I had my brother fish out the copy of my will he’d turned up in our mother’s papers so the lawyer could do a more professional update. He read it (no changes at this point), observed that it had been written in 1974 and looked remarkably like the template of his father’s instructions on making a holograph will. I said, “Not your father’s, your grandfather’s!” since his grandfather had provided instructions on how to make one up in a note in my father’s things. This is what happens when your families have been friends since your grandparents were in college together back in the nineteen-aughts.

    I will need to make some changes, he thinks, to be sure to provide for future care of cats, who may possibly outlive us or one of us. These tactful reminders make me happy! So did the visit, since he also asked me about finding his grandmother’s birth certificate, an interesting challenge in these times when I can’t search at the courthouse in person and we are short of other options [she was born in the 1880’s before the state began collecting vital records, could have been born in at least two different counties, and may possibly have been the biological child of the oldest son of her official parents].

    The Twitter silence makes me very happy indeed — apparently when a bunch of rioters’ accounts were shut down, a lot of others disappeared as well — seems as if most of these folks were running ten or fifteen accounts to increase the volume, so now I can hear myself think. Also enjoying the steady drip, drip, drip of arrests and charges, and amused at the sudden irruptions of the Nuremberg Defense which emerged as soon as it dawned that Trump was gone without issuing a Magic Blanket Pardon.

    “[Chansley] regrets very, very much having not just been duped by the president, but by being in a position where he allowed that duping to put him in a position to make decisions he should not have made.” Chansley was arrested days after the riot, and last week he begged Trump for a pardon—but it never came.

    Translation: Oh S**t! I’m going to face REAL prison time for being part of Trump’s insurrection!

    My sympathy is reserved for the Capitol Police.

    1. Should also add that an account of the redecorated Oval Office makes me happy, too! Biden likes a former rug in a lovely deep blue shade and he’s down to two flags — a national flag and a presidential flag. [Presidents didn’t go in for service flags until Eisenhower, who had the national flag and an Army flag, his branch of service. Later Presidents, if veterans, were likely to have their service branch flag, but — I don’t think — not more than one. Only someone who never served at all stuffed the Oval Office with flags for every branch of the service.]

  21. I’m just happy about the politics. And getting to hang out with friends online over the weekend. And I was in a storytelling show, which I literally haven’t done in a year.

  22. Sunday. Shopped. Got dinner. The dotter always places the order because her fodda is cell-phone impaired. (Where’s the dial?) The dotter didn’t place her own order, just mine. So I gave her mine and ate the Black Forest Ham and Baby Swiss sammich instead. (It was for my midnight snack tonight, but tasted excellent.) She’s happy. I’m happy.

    Then because I had in hand a W2, a 1099R and a SSA-1099, I logged into Turbo Tax and for free filed my taxes. I trimmed my state taxes too much after last year’s $600 return, so I’m paying VA $270 this year. But I’m getting $1200 back from Uncle Sugar, so that’s covered. I’ll fix the withholding. 🙂

    Nothing but good times ahead.

    1. I feel I must apologize if it seems like I am shilling for TurboTax or bragging about my “enormous” refund. On the first part, I use Turbo Tax because they charge me nothing, though they would love to upgrade that to a fee-worthy state. All this means is that for several years I have been stingy with my tax-free giving, avoided medical complications, and qualified best for the standard deduction.

      On the second item, my “huge” refund means I withheld $100 per month too much for federal and $25 too little for state. I fixed the state withholding within an hour of filing. The federal will take some calculations on the new(est) W4 form, very annoying. Anyway, there’s no bragging involved in sharing that my math skills suck.

      The real brag here is that I am finished with and filed for state and federal taxes and if I wasn’t the first Argher to do so, I was close. [BRAG!]

  23. I’m happy that my Mother’s packing up and sale of house is done, she’s moving up north, 2 states away to live with my brother and his partner – and what will be 5 children once the twins are born. Which also makes me happy that I live 2 states away – he’s already asked me to fly up and babysit when his partner goes into labour! I can’t imagine what it would be like if I lived in the same city!

    I’m happy that my dad, who has melanoma tumours, is improving on the Immune Protocol that he’s on. He’s also recovering from the mini stroke that meant he lost the use of his right arm & hand. He can now write out the alphabet, which is a big improvement in the 3 weeks since he first had it.
    It’s tough seeing someone who 8 weeks ago was moving railway sleepers & wheelbarrows of scoria for the garden steps he was building, be so crumpled with pain from the tumours, and the first time that he’s facing inabilities (he’s 78). The only good part is his hospital is 5 mins up the road from me (he’s normally 1.5 hours away) and I’m able to visit him daily.

    We talked today about there being a difference between Aged, Elderly and Geriatric and how he needs to remind himself that he’s only aged, not elderly or geriatric, and make himself do the hard rehab work to get back to what he was, even if he doesn’t want to. He agreed and said that he needs to stop the negative self talk that is putting him in the geriatric category. Fingers crossed for a full recovery.

    1. It is really hard, but it helps to have goal, my Dad was not the most disciplined, but they wouldn’t let him drive again unless he was up and running so he worked at it. My friend’s Dad had rehab for mobility problems, but his family planned to take him on a nice holiday with the grandchildren after he was better and he did get there, he really wanted to go for walks with the grandchildren.

  24. Like others have said, it has been such a relief to click on the news without mentally wincing and thinking “what now. ” It’s been a long time since my shoulders have not been hunched to my ears.

    My happy yesterday was so small. I shopped at a different grocery store and found Lactaid sour cream. None of the other stores where I shop carry it. It tasted so good that I almost cried. The alternatives (I’ve tried a lot of them) are just awful.

  25. We had a nice trip to Edmonton on Saturday. We delivered the cat tree we made for our friends and did a little shopping. I went to Costco and the dollar store and Fabricland (where I bought the wrong fabric but have a plan to make it the right fabric). Paul did the rest, all of it curbside pickup (yay!). We even managed to have a healthy lunch which was good. The dogs were confused as to where their French fries were though.

    On Sunday I continued with the flurry of organizing and cleaning and got 95% of the bathrooms done (we have 2 that actually have storage spaces). I finished organizing them this morning and am just waiting on a shelf to be built so I can finish. It feels so good to get a handle on these spaces, it really is much better for my mental health.

  26. I’m happy that we had a weekend of rain/sun/rain which means I can safely ignore the yard for another week.

    Also happy that a friend sent me a link to James Corden’s ‘One More Day’ video. 🙂

    Happy that things are looking UP.

  27. I’m happy to have intelligent, empathetic adults in charge of government again, including more women than ever in high-ranking positions, and that the goal to have the image of Harriet Tubman on $20 bills in time for the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment has resumed.

  28. I’m happy that Schumer made McConnell back down. It bodes well.

    I’m happy that my daughter is teaching her kitten to communicate by pressing floor buttons that have recorded messages. “Food” “out” “no”. Those buttons are the best present I gave her in a long time

    I have no idea whether it will work (for one thing so far the kitten may be too light to press hard enough ) but it’s giving my 29 y o daughter endless hours of entertainment during the pandemic. And it could even be useful.

    It’s this technique : https://fb.watch/3fiVqwqrEC/

    Steve the Cat Uses Talking Buttons to Ask for Food, Snuggles, ‘Kittynip,’ Outdoor Time and More https://people.com/pets/steve-cat-talking-buttons/?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=social-share-article

  29. The US political has cheered me up immensely. I think I may even be sleeping better.

    I got some stuff done around the house this past weekend. That always cheers me up.

    I visited virtually with my college best friends, none of whom live anywhere near me. We’re kicking ourselves for not realizing we could be doing this until the pandemic changed things.

    And we’ve got more daylight in the north now. I got to drive to work in the daylight today for the first time in months!

  30. I’m happy that you’re happy and feel as though you got your country back. I wish I felt that way but I don’t. I am upset about the censorship on social media. I would prefer people be offended than censored. I am concerned about people coordinating riots on social media but I was concerned about that when BLM protesters were coordinating efforts to loot stores and burn cities. In my opinion, you are either fine with using riots to make a point or you aren’t. You can’t decide that it’s acceptable to riot under the right circumstances. I agree that it’s nice that the news isn’t filled with horrible stories about the President but I don’t think it’s fair or respectful for Joe Biden to be getting a free pass on anything bad. I want the media to report on all the facts. I realize that most journalists identify as Liberal but I don’t want opinions, bias or attempts to influence. I want the press to give me the facts and let me think for myself. Without truth we have nothing.

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