I am happy to report that I am a normal human being when it comes to sex and sexuality.
I know, you were worried, right?
No, really. I’m normal.
When I hear people talking about sex or when I hear jokes about sex, I get it.
When I see sex in the movies, I get it.
I don’t get every kind of sex, but I mostly get sex.
I would say that when it comes to down to it, sex – and the topic of sex – just isn’t an issue in my life.
Again, I know you’re relieved to know this.
Being normal about sex is the reason I know I’m not normal about happiness.
It’s not that I can’t be happy, I can.
I can be happy. And I have been happy. And I’m often happy.
I know what happiness feels like.
But the thing is that happiness isn’t a normal and natural part of me. It’s not my default status.
I never really would have thought about happiness, to tell you the truth. I’ve been pretty busy in my life being other things and thinking about other things.
But happiness is in my face pretty regularly.
There’s always a study about happiness or an article about happiness or a catchy song about being happy, happy, happy.
I never really would have thought about happiness, but it feels to me like happiness is something people really like to think about.
I end up thinking about happiness a lot because I wonder if other people just take happiness for granted. Mostly I think about happiness when I’m feeling really happy.
When I’m feeling really happy, I notice how happy I am. And I wonder if this is what other people feel like on such a regular basis that they don’t even really notice it. Kind of the way I don’t notice I feel sexual.
And the truth is, I don’t know the answer.
It’s not that I’m an unhappy person. It’s just that I’m a person with faulty wiring. I was born with chemistry that doesn’t make sense a lot of time. And my chemistry doesn’t appear to be related to life’s circumstance.
I could win the lottery on a day when my chemistry is off. And I would know that I was technically happy about winning the lottery but that I might have to wait a few days to actually feel the happiness.
This week I read something that made me feel significantly better about happiness.
Vanity Fair interviewed David Byrne, asking him about happiness.
Luckily for me, David Byrne – who is one of my creative gods – didn’t say that happiness is all you need. I really would have been screwed if that were true.
David Byrne said the following, which I “love, love, love” to quote Teresa Guidice.
Happiness, as I’ve experienced it and observed it in others, seems to be random—some of us are happy fairly regularly (I am, mostly), and some of us not as much—but there seems to be no clear explanation as to why. It comes and goes at unexpected moments, too. The graph of happiness doesn’t even seem to match what is going on in our lives. Or maybe it does and we don’t know it. Money—is there a connection between money and happiness? It takes away a world of worries and anxieties, but are rich folks all happy? Are you kidding? Donald Trump is ALWAYS scowling. That said, it’s hard to be happy if you don’t know where you’ll sleep or where your next meal is coming from. The pursuit of happiness? Where are we supposed to look? Are there clues hidden somewhere? The very act of searching and striving for it can lead to frustration and unhappiness. I suspect that happiness finds you—I’m not sure you can find a road that leads to it.
So today I need to send a thank you note – or perhaps some thank you art – to David Byrne.
Because my understanding of happiness can’t come from my own messed up head.
So I need really smart, creative, talented, amazing people like him to tell me what a normal approach to happiness is. And what he told me makes me very happy.