Wednesday, March 5, 2014

We're trying to buy happiness

Years ago when I was living close to the earth and pretty much on a barter system I seemed to do pretty good for myself.

I was busy when I wanted to be busy and could goof off when I wanted to and if I felt like doing something simply because it interested me I simply did it.

I spent a lot of time taking advantage of the fact that I had such freedom.

Of course I did without a lot of things most people take for granted. I did without running water and electricity and had a portable AM/FM/SW to keep track of the world. With one AM and one FM station on Kodiak Island at the time I got some of my news from the BBC and other shortwave news sources.

Yet, even without running water and electricity I consider it to be a pretty good trade-off I made. I can remember trading a job with my doctor for an office visit. I hung a couple of doors for him. I also traded fixing a sink and installing an electrical outlet with a woman in exchange for washing a duffel bag full of laundry for me.

I can also remember sheet rocking a room for a guy in trade for a sail for my boat that he had in his garage. It was used but in good condition and later served me well. A couple of months later I traded some work for a parachute that I turned into a spinnaker of sorts. I lofted it out on the dance floor of a local bar one afternoon.

Of course, if someone wanted to give me a few bucks for doing something I wasn't too adverse to that but I think I got my best deals by trading.

Still, the point is that at that time I wasn't a wage slave, but pretty much a free person. There really wasn't a whole lot that anyone could take away from me because I didn't have very much to begin with.

I was by most definitions, homeless.

It was a care free existence that to this day marks me with an attitude I still hold. I know I can have a pretty happy life with little or nothing. It puts me in somewhat of a position of power.

I learned a lot looking back on those times.

I learned that happiness is not a financial state or being able to look at posessions. Happiness is an attitude and while lack of money or materiel can make you miserable, money can't buy happiness.

It's something that a lot of people do not realize.

It is also a big part of why we're in a lot of trouble in this country. We're trying to buy happiness with our social programs.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

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