Sunday, January 24, 2016

January 24: Work and More Work, Laughter Instead of Tears, Classic Saint Marty

All I have done all day long is work and more work.

I put together a presentation for my Wednesday night class.  I updated my Curriculum Vita for my upcoming annual evaluation and promotion.  Then I made a lesson plan for the class I teach tomorrow afternoon.  Finally, I read about 100 pages of a textbook.  I am pretty much brain dead.

At the end of this day, this weekend, I can honestly say that I did not accomplish half the stuff I wanted to accomplish over the last three days, but I never do.  That's the way my life goes. Big plan.  Not enough time.  I know that I don't always use my time wisely.  I pleasure read too much.  Maybe spend too much time playing with my son or watching American Idol.  Yet, as I get ready for bed, it feels like I still have miles to go before I sleep.  Miles to go before I sleep.

Today's episode of Classic Saint Marty first aired four years ago.  It's about taking joy in small, daily blessings.  Embracing light instead of dark.  Choosing laughter instead of tears.

January 24, 2012:  Happiness, Finding Happiness, Small Stuff

He went to church, and walked about the streets, and watched the people hurrying to and fro, and patted children on the head, and questioned beggars, and looked down into the kitchens of houses, and up to the windows; and found that everything could yield him pleasure.  He had never dreamed that any walk--that anything--could give him so much happiness.

Of course, this passage describes the Ebenezer Scrooge from the end of the novel, not the beginning.  In the beginning, Scrooge never looks up.  He keeps his nose to the ground and avoids human contact like a testy skunk, always ready to unleash his particular cloud of venom upon the world.  The Scrooge in this passage seeks out human interaction, goes searching the streets and alleys and street corners for opportunities to spread and receive joy.  He is a changed man, finding pleasure in beggars and bishops.

I would love to live my life the way the redeemed Scrooge lives his life.  I would love to find pleasure in everything, no matter what.  Of course, Scrooge has to be literally scared witless before he reaches this condition of perpetual happiness.  I'm not sure I want to go to those lengths (you know, visiting my own neglected grave) in order to attain the Scrooge state, though.  I'm wondering if I can reach enlightenment without so much...I don't know...drama, I guess.  I mean, I'm not quite as bad as Scrooge.  I don't kick small children and eat gruel every night for dinner.

Of course, I can make the choice to be happy.  Scrooge's problems haven't disappeared.  He still has business to conduct, debts to pay.  The difference is that he isn't letting those details ruin his life.  He's choosing to spread joy instead of grief.  He's not sweating the small stuff.

I have problems.  Sometimes those problems seem overpowering.  I need to stop letting my problems run my life.  I need to see the good in people and circumstances, not the bad.  That should be my goal for the day.  Not letting the small annoyances of my world bother me.

Saint Marty is doing his part to make the world a better place.  Really, he is.  He is, dammit.
Spreading Christmas spirit all year...

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