Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Oh, hello there. And thank you for joining us. Today on Thoughts we're thinking about keys to happiness.

I think the key to happiness is not allowing yourself any time to think. That way, your thoughts are never yours because you didn't work for--or think of--them. They are the thoughts of other people. They take the place of all the thoughts, including the sad ones, you would have had if you were still thinking for yourself.

There is no such thing as pure thoughtlessness. Even the absence of thought is itself a thought. You will always have thoughts. The question is: whose thoughts will you have? Yours. . .or someone else's?

You must actively think in order to have your own thoughts. Paradoxically, it is precisely by not thinking that you can think other people's thoughts. They simply get thought for you when you're not paying attention.

It sounds existentially dreary, I know. But really, it's not.

I have noticed that people who think their own thoughts--in a word, individuals--are generally not as happy as people who think other people's thoughts. By allowing yourself to think other people's thoughts, you become part of a community of Other People. And therefore not alone.

Theirs is the blessing of convenient simplicity. Freedom from the chafing shackles of choice.

I heard that this thing is nice! Somebody told me that this thing is great! I saw on the television that this thing is important!

Even when they're sad, they're happy. Because they are not themselves. They are Other People. Only an individual can truly be sad. For in his or her sadness, the individual has no ready access to the endless supply lines of happy thoughts being shipped all over the globe via Other People Express.

Individuals. Theirs is a storm to be weathered alone. We'll be right back.
Welcome back to Thoughts. Today we're thinking about keys to happiness. Joining us in my head right now is Dr. Expert. In your expert opinion, doctor, what is the greatest problem with thinking for oneself in the postmodern age?

"Thinking for oneself at this point in history is unquestionably an arduous task. What Herculean labour--to uphold originality in an age that rewards the otherwise! How stoop'd thy frame, how somber thy countenance, anchored by that albatross of individuality! And how more imposing the world doth seem when aware we fully become as to the reach and influence of other people's thoughts on other people's thoughts! These are dark days, indeed--the loneliest time in the history of humankind to be thinking for oneself."

How depressing! When Thoughts returns, some final thoughts. We'll be ri--