Showing posts from November, 2023

happiness is a bird (or "A Song for H")

Yeah, it's confusing why this image is used for this post.... Sometime last year, in the middle of dinner, a friend asked me - "are you happy?" I didn't give it much thought and answered with whatever was at the top of my head.  Happiness is a bird. "Happiness" always feels like an approximation for something else. Scratch beneath that word a little and you may discover other words for what you are trying to express. For example, you may feel pride, you feel a sense of purpose, you feel a sense of community, you feel connected, you feel loved, you feel pleasure, you feel joy, you feel secure, you feel hopeful... And in this long list of feelings and possible states of mind, some of which endure and permeate our being, happiness is perhaps the most slight. Below is a short piece "A Song for H" on happiness. It was written last year as a tribute and reply to that 1949 classic Hank Williams country love song "I'm so lonesome I could cry"

there must be more to life than cats

Last evening in Taipei I decided to drop by a bar I haven’t been before, a speakeas-style place. It was everything a bar on a Monday night would be - a Murakami short story minus the missing cat and half-tragic mystery. Well, okay, take those things away, i t actually won't be much of a Murakami short story. So let’s be honest - it ain’t no short story, just a n othing-happening account of strangers at a bar  on a Monday night. The lady who let me in through the hidden door was Russian. The long-haired dude pretending to do his pretend at the shopfront smiled. Russian ladies, they are a bit bossy. You know, they always wear an expression like they are about to shout at you or maybe instigate something more violent to happen. Anyway, since she spoke English with an American accent, I figured it was safe. There were 2 white men at the bar counter. The bartender is a good looking Chinese boy with waist length stringy hair in a ponytail and a nose ring. He wore a faded Radiohead tee th