Thursday, August 11, 2011

Riding My Own Coattails -- An Exercise in Laziness

So throughout the development of that silly little Cracked article I can't shut up about, there was a lot of back and forth with editorial on what studies/evidence worked and what didn't. One of the segments that got axed quite early in the process was the one that actually inspired the piece to begin with.

Like the educated piece of excrement that I am, I was browsing The New York Times online when I came across this article:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/17/science/17tierney.html?_r=2&ref=science      (You don't have to read it, I've just always wanted to add a link to NY Times on this blog centered around poop.) I was amazed at just how fucking hard modern psychology was making it to be happy, therefore inspiring me to make fun of the whole concept in general.

While the genius editors at Cracked certainly know best, I thought the segment would be a perfect fit for a dung heap like this blog. Plus, it's already written, so I don't have to do any real work. Unless you count cutting and pasting, which was only truly hard in kindergarten. Even then the only true challenge was resisting the urge to eat that deliciously fragrant (and chunky!) glue-like substance. But I digress. Here it is in all it's glory, the segment not good enough to make the final cut on a REAL website, but deemed just right to fertilize the green pastures of Turd Mountain:


Reason #1: They're raising the bar.
                So you walk around smiling, humming to yourself, and you are generally content with your life. Guess what? That’s not enough. It’s not up to you to decide you’re happy, that’s what we have psychologists for. And they say you’re full of shit.
                Dr. Martin Seligman, president of the American Psychological Association and expert bubble-burster, has redefined what it means to be happy and it is a hard combination to crack.
                Seligman, who apparently doesn’t get enough kicks making shit up for a living, also created an acronym to measure happiness. P.E.R.M.A. – positive emotion, engagement (the feeling of being lost in a task), relationships, meaning, and accomplishment.  He says that all these requirements must be met to experience true happiness.
                That’s right, now before you smile you have to run through a checklist in your head using a ROY G BIV device to remember what the fuck you’re checking for.
                Dr. Poopie Pants also states that “life satisfaction” is NOT an indication of happiness. “Life satisfaction essentially measures cheerful moods, so it is not entitled to a central place in any theory that aims to be more than a happiology,” he states in his new book Flourish, clearly making a mockery of both cheerful people and the English language.
                So how does Seligman propose we get our happy on? He recommends that on top of building meaningful relationships with others and our environment that we set happiness goals for ourselves and monitor progress, actually tracking the time spent working towards these goals. Yes, we’re serious.
                Before you go grab your notepad and pencil, we suggest you read on to understand just how hopeless this pipedream of happiness really is.


<cue rest of article you've already read, because I've crammed it down your throat 40000 times this week>

So there you have it, the precursor to my first published work and my laziest blog entry EVER all rolled into one. Thanks for reading!

3 comments:

  1. This is sort of like reading Camus' Myth of Sisyphus except... you know, fun.

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  2. Pretty good article in Cracked. By the way, since incorrect spelling and grammar are, justly, one of your concerns, you might want to edit "Here it is in all it's glory" in this blog entry ;)

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  3. Ha!!! I mean, I did that on purpose to see if you guys were paying attention.... yeah.....

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