My Happy Little Secret
I have a secret passion. It was actually a secret to me for a while, as well. I was not always fully aware, perhaps because I have always thought in terms of what I am supposed to be doing instead of just being who I am. So now I am sharing my secret passion with the world.
I love watching people do what they love or loving what they are doing.
I saw a man eating chicken wings while driving and it was amazing. He seemed to be all in, aggressively pulling all of the meat from the bone with his teeth. He was successful in leaving a clear bone. He was lost in the moment, vibing to his music and munching on his chicken. I couldn’t help smiling.
There was a woman dancing her heart away in her car. She was so fully involved in the music, shoulders shaking and fingers snapping. She released her grip on the wheel at the red light, raising her hands so she could snap with both hands and sway to the rhythm. She was bringing me so much joy. I was awash in cheer seeing her enjoy that moment.
The way I see it, I’ve always been somewhat of a voyeur. I enjoy watching people be people. I enjoy watching the uncomplicated joy of people being themselves. I watch cooking competitions because what they do is a form of art and I get to watch them in their element. I listen to podcasts that feature interviews with people doing what they love because it is pure joy to my ears. I used to think it was inspiration; maybe I’d find my thing and chase my own dream. But then I realized, watching others is my thing. One of the best moments of a trip to NYC, for me, was people watching in Union Square. When the potter is in sync with the rhythm of the pottery wheel, when the painter is only hearing the music playing in the background and only seeing the creation that is forming before their eyes, that brings me joy. When someone is dancing at the gas pump or in the aisles of the grocery store, it brings me joy. When someone is geeking out about the texture of soil, I am not just learning about the soil, I am learning about the teacher. I love to see people happy.
I don’t have to make them happy. I don’t have to have anything to do with that happiness. But I am well aware of how full of bad news the world is. Whole economies are crumbling, there are wars going on, there is a shortage of-you name it-and the list goes on. But we can find happiness in all of this. We can look to each other and learn to delight in each other.
By the way, I do have my thing. I am an artist. I create collages on both photoshop and paper. Oh yeah, and I write. I can say that watching me do either of those things would bore you to tears. Completed work is deeply satisfying but I am fortunate that to find a quick cheer fill up, I only need to look around and find that person…whoever they are.