Monday, April 30, 2007

Different kinds of happy

I Found My Lost Coat happy combines feelings of relief and thankfulness with notes of newfound wealth because now you won’t have to shell out the 50+ bucks you’d mentally budgeted to replace it. I love this coat—it’s a lined black windbreaker that’s crisp and tailored enough to work with dress clothes and bomber-jackety enough to work with jeans and boots. And even if I crush it into a gym bag it pops out looking (but not necessarily smelling) like it just came from the cleaners. Apparently I’d left it at the theater during tech week for the chorus show. Now it’s safely home and I’m never letting it out of the house again.

I Bought Funky New Shoes With A Coupon happy is akin to the excitement and novelty of a new relationship—but with a touch of pre-emptive guilt because eventually your boyfriend is going to find out about it. We already have enough shoes to open a shoe store, albeit only for men with size 11 and 13 feet. And now we have another pair to squeeze into the closet. Fortunately, I have a pair in mind I’ve grown tired of, and just like with children, I’ll probably give those shoes away to make room for the new ones.

I Cooked A Meal For My Boyfriend And My Visiting Parents And We’re All Enjoying It Together In Our Cozy Little Sunroom happy is the kind of happy that’s hard to define. There are elements of nurturing from providing food and shelter for the people who are the most important to you. There are elements of pride that you have groceries and cooking skills and dishes and lovely floors and bay windows and soft jazz and you can throw them all together to create a profoundly satisfying experience. And there is a sense of accomplishment that you were smart enough to pick parents and a boyfriend who are at once kind and intelligent and polite and interesting and able to become the family they are on the very first time they meet. The four of us spent the weekend chatting and laughing and having sodas and walking around the neighborhood and visiting the lake and getting to know each other better. And it struck me somewhere along the way that everyone was there because of me. But also because they wanted to be. (And maybe a little because I make a kick-ass vegetable-beef soup. From scratch. With garlic-cheese bread on the side and berries and pudding in gay little parfait glasses for dessert.) And there is something so moving … so affirming … so profoundly, organically right about creating a family out of the people you love that I still haven’t adequately described it after 248 words.

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