Friday, August 14, 2015

Classic Happiness

In some cases the exile loneliness of performing on a cruise ship gives me a chance to think about what life is all about.  Here is an example of a "Sea Blog" thumb-typed four and a half years ago on my state of the art CrackBerry.  Technology changes... human nature does not.

Friday, January 07, 2011

What is happiness

This is a study in human nature with me as the bad example. (I bow to my friend Zan on this subject. Consult her Blog "Zan on Happiness" for real solutions to the question of happiness.)
I finally get on the Navigator of the Seas. I've been on this ship many times and know the accommodations well. It is a suite and not a crew cabin.
I am happy.
Then I settle in I discover that the television is not working. Since Bob doesn't talk to me except on stage I usually have the TV on and tuned to CNN for company and background noise. I feel it keeps me in touch on the off chance there might be some universal catastrophe that might cancel my show, or at the least change my narrative on stage.
But the television is broken and won't turn on.  I say to myself. 
"Damn TV". I am not happy.
For a few minutes I wonder what will keep me occupied during my down time. I soon discover I can bide my time drawing and reading and playing with my IPAD. I begin to fill the day with those activities. I think how much calmer it is spending time creatively with out the drone of impending disaster and drug ads polluting the atmosphere of my cabin. I fall asleep that night not to the TV but beautiful music coming from my favorite iTunes. I think this will be a great advantage not having a TV. The TV is such a distraction. I say, 
"Damn TV" and I am happy.
I wake up refreshed. I greet my steward with a smile in the hallway. He is happy. He asks if everything is alright. I say the TV doesn't work but all is good. The steward says, 
"Damn TV." He is not happy.
He leads me back to the suite. After a few unhappy minutes trying to fix it he finally discovers a glitch in the remote. He says the TV is prone to this problem. Frustrated that it he has to fix it again, he says, 
"Damn TV", and He is happy.
He leaves the suite with the Television on and ironically tuned to CNN. Cliff hanger promos fill my world once again and I am caught up in the need to see the incredible video coming up next. I wonder about a problem posed in a television drug ad, who would I call if I suddenly have an erection that lasts four hours. The production manager? The Captain of the Ship?
I think I am happy. But then realize I am caught up in the world of "coming up next". I am not drawing and I am not reading. I am not listening to my music. I come to my senses and break the hypnotic CNN spell. I try to turn it off but can't. Short of contacting the steward and ruining his happiness again, I can not get the TV turned off. I think to myself .... 
"Damn TV" and I am not happy.
I leave the television on and leave the suite for the deck looking over Montego Bay. Soaking in the beauty I decide to write a blog on my BlackBerry about not being happy. But now... I am happy........ "Damn TV."
As you were,


P. Grecian said...

I love the rhythm of that piece.
If you hadn't been a world-class ventriloquist, you might very well have been Shel Silverstein.
Damn TV.
This story made me happy.

Kathy Brodrick said...

Totally get the TV thing. All my layovers I turned it on & made sure my favorite channels worked! Didn't feel so alone when far away. Esp in LAX I loved Steve & Dorothy or someone like that... It's been 5 yrs since I've flown now. They made me laugh & I thought them as personal Cali buds. In MIA I used to watch this one 'heavier' black woman surprise women with makeovers & other mundane shit & would be happy for her that she had finally 'made it'. I had met her in NYC at a Lesbian bar with one of her female lovers whom I knew quite well, both of them on the 'down low' and no one ever knew. Still don't. Both still in the closet for fame & money. Such a shame. But they're a lot richer than I am, except I got true love that's for sure! Guess Ya gotta do what you gotta do. Always loved David Letterman late at night. Still miss him, no one has filled that slot yet. Anyway happiness is a wonderful thing! Esp when we can find it ourselves!

Lloyd Lebow said...

Since my other half has dementia, I always defer to what makes him comfortable on the tube. The result is an encyclopedic knowledge of Law and Order, SVU, NCIS and Bones. The characters on these shows are his friends. Sometime in the middle of the night I wake up and hit the off button. I'm not sure how I would cope with constant CNN. My worst fear is having a stroke and not being able to communicate and I get assigned a home care nurse who only watches Fox News. Chill just went up my spine.