4 Things That (Really Shouldn’t) Make You Happy

Sometimes it's the worst things that put a smile on your face.

Paul Tamburroby Paul Tamburro

There are the obvious things that leave us with a grin as bright as the bumper of a rappers Cadillac – sex, copious amounts of alcohol, sex, football, sex… but then there are the not so obvious things that we rarely (if ever) admit to finding joy in. Here are 4 of those things.

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1. Watching old episodes of ‘Friends’

“Hey – my job is a joke and I am broke! Now this is a show I can really get behind!” you say to yourself, sitting in your underwear and watching a marathon of Friends episode. Will Ross and Rachel ever get together again? Will Joey find true love? Will a Phoebe episode ever be worth watching? You become so engrossed in watching the merry band of New Yoikers’ fun and charming little adventures that you slowly start to forget the fact that your friends – y’know, the non-fiction ones – haven’t spoken to you in about a month.

The Rembrandts were lying, the cast of Friends aren’t here for you – they’re just improbably attractive actors on a screen portraying a group of characters who, if they were really broke, wouldn’t be able to afford lavish apartments in the nice part of New York, instead they would be trying to avoid gun fire whilst prostituting themselves on the streets of Brooklyn. Chandler’s not so funny now, is he?

 

2. Receiving 10 or more ‘Likes’ on a status update

Though your regular status updates concerning things such as eating lunch and catching the bus will generally receive one or two Likes, every once in a while there is that moment when you think of an update so witty, so relevant and so damned wonderful that it feels like the whole world has risen to its feet in order to applaud your mind.

“I’ve done it. I’ve finally broken the zeitgeist” you say to yourself as your update receives yet another like. You’re now on 13 in the space of 5 minutes. It’s time to call your Mom and tell her that she was wrong – you’re not a fuck-up after all.

 

3. Hearing that someone you know is worse off than you.

“Have you heard that Gary’s lost his job?” a mutual friend asks you. You’ll reply that you hadn’t before launching into an insincere diatribe about what a wonderful person Gary is and how he doesn’t deserve the tough hand he is being dealt in life, while secretly holding in a smile because watching a friend fail makes you feel wonderfully superior.

In fact, if it wasn’t socially unacceptable to do so, you’d venture over to Gary’s flat right now and show him photographs of you sitting at your work desk, wearing a suit and setting money alight with a cigar. Don’t worry though, because your mutual friend is thinking exactly the same thing. He’s also thinking that he hopes Gary’s fiancée leaves him, just to put the final nail in the coffin. Poor Gary. Poor pathetic, miserable, lonely, unsuccessful Gary.

 

4. Not going out

“I can’t make it tonight, I’ve got chronic diarrhoea” you text your friend, before turning on your Xbox and preparing yourself for a night in with just you and your cat. This is wonderful, you think to yourself – no squashing your face in a strangers armpit on the cramped dancefloor, no wasting money on overpriced drinks, no pressure to wake up in someone else’s bed tomorrow morning. Sure, socialising has its benefits, but not when you’re about to take Hull City to the Premier League on FIFA 12. You might even be able to wake up before 3pm tomorrow, if you’re lucky.

But then 2am comes and you receive a drunk text message from Steve who politely informs you of the wealth of “fit birds” in the club and then you suddenly realise that it’s Friday night and you’re sober. “What have I become?” you ask yourself, before putting your slippers on and venturing into the kitchen to make yourself a mug of hot chocolate.

 

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