Taki Taki

High life | 8 December 2016

Here’s Dr Taki’s prescription for happiness: don’t strive for it non-stop; stay away from social media; head for Salt Lake City

Here we go again, my 40th Christmas column in a row, and it seems only two weeks ago that I filed the last one. This is a very happy time of year — parties galore, lots of love for our fellow man and happiness all around. Mind you, there is an old calypso that says: ‘If you want to be happy for the rest of your life, never make a pretty woman your wife…’. I’m not so sure about that; in my book, the prettier the woman the happier it makes me, but I could be wrong. My instinct tells me that a pretty woman keeps a man on his toes. No beautiful woman will stay with a man who doesn’t deserve her — not in the long run, anyway. But I’ve also noticed that many — though not all — very beautiful women are not very happy.

Why is that? Phonies such as Freud and his ilk blamed it all on sexual dreams, but I don’t agree. Planning to be happy is tricky, especially for the beautiful, who expect it. Dr Taki is rarely wrong, especially about such matters. Beautiful people are supposed to be happy but their quest for happiness makes them very miserable. Expecting to be happy, which most people do when young, is a trap many fall into later on.

Americans are desperate to be happy, more so than other people, at least if one judges by the self-help books on happiness that are published and sold each year in America. Apparently, some 17,000 books on happiness have been published, which I guess is more than the number of ‘How to murder whole tribes’ books that have been published in Africa. One theory about happiness that emerges from these ludicrous self-help manuals is that oxytocin, the pleasure hormone associated with attachment, brings happiness.

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