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It's a question acrid enough to turn any epicurean dinner party into a contemporary existential crisis... how can we truly be happy (and so blithely dine on fine wine and artisanal cheese) when we are aware of so much suffering in the world?
Can we achieve a state of individual bliss despite the misfortunes of so many fellow humans or is our pursuit of happiness in the face of global disparity a Sisyphean exercise, akin to when the gods made the avaricious Ancient Greek king roll a giant boulder up a mountain as punishment? Sisyphus, of course, discovered that the boulder would always roll down before he could get it to the top, forcing him to begin the pointless exercise anew, for eternity.

Are we repeating his futile pursuit?

One is hard-pressed to dodge bad news in today's hyper plugged-in society. You might switch on your computer with the simple intent of browsing for socks on the internet, only to wind up watching news clips about yet another suicide bombing in Syria. Yo…


Watch this 3-minute clip and then let's chat:

Watt's speech is achingly true, isn't it? We all know it, it's under our skin. Maybe it resonates a little too much for some. Maybe you think it's too late. Maybe you think you don't know what you desire.

The truth is that it's not too late. And you do know what you desire. It's fear that stops you from defining it and fear that stops you from making it happen.

Fear of failure.
Fear of judgement.
Fear of not keeping up with the Joneses.
Fear of losing what you have.

Perhaps you'll only change when the fear of never living your life the way you truly want to, overpowers the fear of the unknown. Crap, I know it finally has for me. Are you living your life the way you truly want to. Are you? It starts by asking yourself that question. We all need to ask ourselves that question.


When you were a kid, having FUN was your biggest priority. Yeah, those days. You'd get your fun fill from getting dinked, falling off, seeing which of your friends could stuff the most Twinkies in their gob at once, hurting your frenemies by pretending to gift them a slap band and then slapping that band so hard...

Geez you fall over a lot when you're a kid.

Fast forward to present-day adulthood and having FUN isn't on our radar. Time and mortgages, it seems, squeeze the fun juice outta us until we dismiss it as something only children can indulge in. Which is sad, don't you think?

How about we declare 2015 the Year of Having Fun. More fun on this blog, more fun with our style, more FUN every day. Because, well, why not?

Since I'm no longer in to stuffing Twinkies in my gob, I've devised a list of silly shit I'm gonna get up to in order to increase my daily fun factor:

Wear plaid and spots in the same outfit so people smile at me. They'll be thinking "w…


Why do we keep wanting more and more? What’s at the core of our insatiability?

It’s matter of fact that most – not all, but most – of us are locked into a rhythm of living to work, working to earn and earning to consume. Which wouldn’t be so bad if we consumed for the improvement of ourselves, within our economic means and within the limitations of our natural environment. Of course, this is exactly the opposite of what happens, at least in the developed Western world.

We’re never satisfied with what we have, even if what we have - on a practical level - is more than enough to meet our fundamental needs of food, shelter, safety, love, friendship.

What’s the deal with that? Why do we buy a third pair of brightly coloured ballet flats, or upgrade our smart phone even though our current model is suiting us just fine?

There are a plethora of reasons, including scarcity of goods, status spending and so on. Hungarian-born economist Tibor Scitovsky stated that getting everything we needed for …


In the 1930s, British economist John Maynard Keynes (those who studied macroeconomics would be friendly with him) predicted that over the next century, wealth would rise to such a level that we would have to work no more than 15 hours a week, allowing us ample time for greater life pursuits - ‘the good life’. Keynes predicted that a utopian state would evolve, where people will have amassed enough monetary wealth to fulfil their material needs, thus allowing more philosophical, meaningful and soul-enriching pursuits to dominate lifestyles.

Ha! HONK if you’re still waiting for that one! In fact what’s happened over the last century is somewhat a trillion times less inspiring. Overall, average leisure time has increased by only four or five hours per week. While, overall, we’re 4 to 5 times richer than we were 100 years ago, we’re working just as hard, just as long.

Consequently, we’re missing out on doing the stuff that makes life richer: honestly and deeply connecting with friends and f…


The story goes like this:

A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the violin; it was a cold January morning. He played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour, it was calculated that 1,100 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

Three minutes went by, and a middle aged man noticed there was musician playing. He slowed his pace, and stopped for a few seconds, and then hurried up to meet his schedule.

A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw the money in the till without stopping and continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late for work.

The one who paid the most attention was a 3 year old boy. His mother tagged him along, hurried, but the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally, the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turn…


I'm engrossed in a book by Daniel Klein called Travels with Epicurus. Read it? Klein is a 70+ year old who travels to the Greek island of Hydra in search of how to live an authentic old age. He goes to study the old folk there, whom, he believes, live their elderly years contently.

Klein travels with a stash of philosophy books on how to live a good life, including works written by Epicurus, an ancient Greek philosopher whose notions of a good life revolved around simple pleasures and self-sufficiency (and hence, freedom). He wrote:
"Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance."


Living simply, as a minimalist, is like Henry Thoreau going to the woods. It forces you to live deliberately and to front only the essential facts of life.

Thoreau embarked on a two-year experiment in simple living in 1845, when he moved to a small, self-built house in the woods: