Happiness is a Sad Song was a title among the offerings of the bookshelf in my childhood home. Written by Peanuts main man Charles Schulz, I remember being very confused by the title and the picture of a fairly downtrodden Linus on the cover because the book is all about things that really make a person happy. Stuff like snow days or socks still warm from the dryer when your feet are cold. Actually, I'm not sure if those were examples, but they both make me happy. Anyway, at the time, granting something sad a causal relationship to the experience of happiness did not compute. Years later (teen angst?) I discovered the book again and thought the title was genius.
Finding a song on the radio that devastates you while you are driving is up there as one of the best feelings in the world. It's even better if you're already horrifically depressed! Like finding a lone friend speaking your language when you're lost in a world of the functioning and capable. Before you know it you're in a fully committed, lengthy conversation with the song and you've got a combination of tears and snot tributaries intermingling on your upper lip, making headway toward plopping on the steering wheel in big, weighty drops.
It's nice to let go.
It's less nice when the guy in the car next to you at the red light is not also considering the many ways in which he's failed to achieve preconceived concepts of success he assumed he would have mastered at this age while Cheap Trick's "The Flame" pushes him on toward rapture. You were the first you'll BE the last!
In high school I went to a friend's family cabin. The twin bed to which I was assigned had Happiness is a Sad Song sheets. I wanted to create a tri-fold color brochure that would act as a companion piece to the book titled Happiness is Happiness is a Sad Song Sheets. The inside would say Happiness is the book Happiness is a Sad Song. And, Happiness is playing in a lake until you've forgotten the sun will set. Happiness is the taste of rebellion in the first swig of beer on the dock. Happiness is people who take their card games seriously. Happiness is sleeping on Happiness is a Sad Song Sheets when your hair smells like campfiire.
Here are some suggested Happiness is a Sad Song songs for your approval:
- Still the Same - Bob Seger
- Hey Jude - Beatles
- Only Living Boy in New York - Simon & Garfunkle
- I Am I Said - Neil Diamond
- I Guess That's Why They Call it the Blues - Elton John
- Anyone Who Had a Heart - Dionne Warwick
- I Want Love - Elton John
- Bleed to Love Her - Fleetwood Mac
- Electric Blue - Ice House (one of my favorite songs period)