It never ceases to be a source of amazement to me that since I have begun to walk in the way of my beliefs, my life has changed, and for the better. Simply thanking the Creator at the beginning of each new day makes that day a happier one.
Others have discovered this secret. I haven't read Norman Vincent Peale's work, but I think maybe I will some day, to see how my ideas and his fit together.
My basic personal philosophy is an old and simple one: Live and let live. Here are a couple of tenets that I believe in:
Positivity and contentment breed positivity and contentment. Negativity and anger breed more of the same. One can make the choice to walk in the light or wallow in the darkness.
Thanx to Marti of Midlife Musings for emailing me a concise and quite funny joke yesterday. It inspired me to dust off a joke that was making the rounds in the mid-'60s. Perhaps after 40 years, it will seem new again.
There once lived a woman whose husband worked long hours and enjoyed stopping in at the bar after work, frequently arriving home very late and quite drunk, and often in a bad mood. This made life increasingly lonely and unhappy for the woman, so one day she decided to purchase a pet to provide a pleasant antidote to her grumpy and remote husband.
Entering the pet shop, she spent some time looking around at the variety of animals, unsure what sort of companionship she craved, and finally, in frustration, she turned to the proprietor and inquired of him what he thought might make a suitable pet.
"I have a lively and affable bird here that you might like," he said, leading her over to a creature that resembled nothing so much as an enormous toucan, with black and white feathers and a gaily colored beak.
"What type of bird is this?" the woman asked. The proprietor, who was setting up a terrarium, said, "It's called a 'crunch bird'." "Why is it called that?" she asked. He explained, "It's the literal translation of what the inhabitants of its native region call this bird. Watch."
He plucked a decorative branch from the terrarium and placed it upon the countertop. "Crunch bird, branch," he said. The bird speedily flew to the branch and, with its exceedingly sharp, serrated beak, reduced the branch to a small pile of chips within the space of a minute.
"It will consume anything that you order it to, if you preface the name of the item with the words 'crunch bird', so you must exercise some care," the proprietor said. The woman carefully approached the bird, which gazed soulfully up at her, nuzzled her hand with its beak, and made a low warbling sound. "I'll take it," she said.
That night her husband spent a particularly lengthy time at the bar, and upon arriving home, began to berate his wife for some imagined wrong. His loud and indignant voice elicited a raucous squawk from the bird. Rolling his bloodshot eyes in the direction of the creature, he snarled, "What the hell is that?" "It's a crunch bird," his wife said. He roared, "CRUNCH BIRD, MY ASS!"