6 Although it falls outside the scope of this paper to give a complete overview of the romance genre’s conventions, the most important of these have to do with the basic plot of the romance narrative. An authoritative account of this plot is articulated by romance scholar Pamela Regis, who claims the romance narrative has eight conventional elements: “a definition of society, always corrupt, that the romance novel will reform; the meeting between the heroine and the hero; an account of their attraction for each other; the barrier between them; the point of ritual death; the recognition the fells the barrier; the declaration of heroine and hero that they love each other; and their betrothal” (Regis, A Natural History of the Popular Romance Novel 14).
Loretta Graziano Breuning, Ph.D., grew up surrounded by unhappiness and was determined to make sense of it. She was not convinced by theories of human motivation she learned in school, so she kept searching. When she learned about the effect brain chemicals have on animals, human frustrations suddenly made sense, so she retired from teaching and founded the Inner Mammal Institute. The Inner Mammal Institute provides tools that help people make peace with the animal inside. It has helped thousands of people learn to manage their neurochemical ups and downs. Discover your inner mammal at InnerMammalInstitute.org
Discover a world where sentient machines can't be stopped with weapons, only with humanity's best programmers. Join the Human Defense Department's last ditch effort to save the world: by teaching the brightest students in the nation how to hack and scramble the brains of the enemy. Follow the journey of Mina Lovelace as she seeks to prove herself worthy of following in her mother's footsteps, and tries not to embarrass herself in front of her childhood crush in the process! If you enjoy visual novels, problem solving, political intrigue and love stories, you'll love Code Romantic! Currently in Production.

29Even more so than other material aspects of the romance, the preview scene is marked by a double codification and is accordingly interpreted rather differently by the public and the romance reader. In the public’s interpretation, the extreme conventionality of the scene is the dominant feature and the scene is consequently interpreted as yet another code that signifies the novel’s popular romance identity. Because the scene explicitly evokes stereotypes of the genre that are particularly widespread in our culture – the first kiss, the typical tension between conflict and attraction that is widely associated with popular romances, the clichéd and euphemistic language describing sexual attraction, etc. – this interpretation is guaranteed irrespective of the reader’s profile. Indeed, even a reader who is only aware of the most basic cultural stereotypes surrounding popular romance recognizes in this scene the genre’s conventions and will correctly interpret it as a code for the narrative’s popular romance genre identity. In this process the preview scene not only invokes but also reinforces and perpetuates a number of the stereotypes already surrounding the genre, much like the clinch that is its visual equivalent.


You may think that there’s nothing you can do to feel a little bit happier. In reality, being happier is completely within your control, no matter what situation you’re in. If you want to be happier, then you have to be willing to change your perspective to be more accepting of whatever life may throw at you, while also trying to change the things that aren’t working. If you want to feel happier in no time at all, just follow these steps. But sometimes you just have to do what you think you might need to do or make happen.
A great confidence and commitment builder in a relationship is a shared, positive experience with the person you love. Think of the identity of your relationship — how you and your partner perceive it to be. I bet that inside-joke you share with your partner came from that first date at the baseball game, or that awkward moment at the restaurant when your boyfriend forgot his wallet. Oops! Now, he’s eternally grilled for that mishap!
Felipe and I had arrived in this particular village after an overnight journey from Hanoi on a loud, dirty, Soviet-era train. I can’t rightly remember now why we went to this specific town, but I think some young Danish backpackers had recommended it to us. In any case, after the loud, dirty train journey, there had been a long, loud, dirty bus ride. The bus had finally dropped us off in a staggeringly beautiful place that teetered on the border with China—remote and verdant and wild. We found a hotel and when I stepped out alone to explore the town, to try to shake the stiffness of travel out of my legs, the little girl approached me.
Today's Time Travel story "Nightmare Romance!" comes from 1951 -- before the comic book industry started to self-regulate with the Comics Magazine Association of America's Comics Code Authority. As such, this story from Avon's Romantic Love #7 (September/October 1951) with art by Marion Sitton, is quite scandalous! No slumber parties or football games here!

“When you exercise, chemicals are released in the brain that cause happiness,” explained Nancy Mramor, Ph.D., a psychologist with a private practice in Pittsburgh, Pa. “Fifteen to 20 minutes of walking and the chemicals start kicking in, and the more you do it, the stronger that reaction in the brain becomes.” For a double-whammy, take your walk in nature (or at least, in relatively fresh air and sunlight if you’re a city person). Studies show that putting one foot in front of the other outdoors ... even for just a few minutes ... can help boost mood.
There are two kinds of optimizers: those who write programs, and those who hack what other people have written. Kevin Burton is a perfect example of the latter. With his all-American look, Burton seems to have just stepped out of a Gap ad. But that doesn't mean he can meet women on his own. For that, he relies on a sneaky little program he invented called the AIM Sniffer.
I like your point that commitment has to come from both parties willingly. Commitment to me is devotion and dedication to each other, transparency and trust in your relationship, kindness and consideration toward each other, mutual respect, faith in each other and your relationship, and hope for your future. Many years ago, my mother gave me very simple advice, she called it "5 simole rules for a healthy and happy marriage", these rules can be applied to any relationship, and both parties should try to follow them:
 Shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall but before the German reunion, the first wave of data of the GSOEP was collected in East Germany. Volunteering was still widespread. Due to the shock of the reunion, a large portion of the infrastructure of volunteering (e.g. sports clubs associated with firms) collapsed and people randomly lost their opportunities for volunteering. Based on a comparison of the change in subjective well-being of these people and of people from the control group who had no change in their volunteer status, the hypothesis is supported that volunteering is rewarding in terms of higher life satisfaction.

Ah, commitment. I’m a living, breathing example of this study. Much of my 20s was defined by a lack of commitment to a partner. I stumbled around in different relationships, while all along, the relationship I needed to most get right was the one with myself. You have to be right with yourself before you can truthfully expect to commit to someone else.
Here we’ll cover the five principles to make you thrive, not just survive. You’ll learn how to feel happier, as well as become more focused and energized. In fact, you’ll likely find that as you work toward becoming a more joyful version of yourself, your efforts will quickly spill over into all aspects of your life, making you happier and more fulfilled overall:

One day last summer, I missed the bus to the train station, and when I asked a cyclist for directions, he offered to carry me to the station. How nice! How many examples of happy things in your life can you list, that you did or someone did for you? Take ten minutes: the first five to think of something nice to do, and the last five to do it. Life has nothing to offer if not optimism, and if you honestly think about it, you realize there are a lot of happy things people do for each other. You don't need to be optimistic about life, it is better to realize that life is optimistic, whether you are or not.
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This is a seemingly simple strategy, but I’ve personally found it to make a huge difference to my outlook. There are lots of ways to practice gratitude, from keeping a journal of things you’re grateful for, sharing three good things that happen each day with a friend or your partner, and going out of your way to show gratitude when others help you.


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But surely something has been lost, as well, in our modern and intensely private, closed-off homes. Watching the Hmong women interact with each other, I got to wondering whether the evolution of the ever smaller and ever more nuclear Western family has put a particular strain on modern marriages. In Hmong society, for instance, men and women don’t spend all that much time together. Yes, you have a spouse. Yes, you have sex with that spouse. Yes, your fortunes are tied together. Yes, there might very well be love. But aside from that, men’s and women’s lives are quite firmly separated into the divided realms of their gender-specific tasks. Men work and socialize with other men; women work and socialize with other women. Case in point: there was not a single man to be found anywhere that day around Mai’s house. Whatever the men were off doing (farming, drinking, talking, gambling) they were doing it somewhere else, alone together, separated from the universe of the women. If you are a Hmong woman, then, you don’t necessarily expect your husband to be your best friend, your most intimate confidant, your emotional advisor, your intellectual equal, your comfort in times of sorrow. Hmong women, instead, get a lot of that emotional nourishment and support from other women—from sisters, aunties, mothers, grandmothers. A Hmong woman has many voices in her life, many opinions and emotional buttresses surrounding her at all times. Kinship is to be found within arm’s reach in any direction, and many female hands make light work, or at least lighter work, of the serious burdens of living.
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Love comics were not only good for the wallets of comic companies. They also helped alleviate some of the growing public concern against comics. The January 31, 1949, edition of The New York Times pronounced that the anti-comics drive was waning and that romance comics (called “love” type comics in the article) were replacing crime comics on the newsstands.
40The apparent simplicity of the category romance novel’s materiality conceals a complex semiotic system of double encoding. The strong conventionality that marks the material packaging of the novel functions in a complex way that defies the stereotypes of simplicity, formula and repetition that surround the genre even as, on its surface level, it reinforces and perpetuates these same stereotypes. Whereas the mass public relies on this stereotype-confirming surface level to simplistically interpret the book as a formulaic instance of genre fiction, understanding – decoding – the hidden complexities of the underlying secondary semiotic layer requires the romance reader’s extensive knowledge of both the romance genre’s overall conventions and those that are specific to the category romance format. Only on the basis of such generic knowledge can this seemingly overwhelming conventionality be perceived and recognized as markers of variation and deviation instead of repetition and similarity.
He redeems your life from the pit. That word “redeem” has to do with buying back out of bondage, bondage to the pit of despair, the pit of sin, the pit of addiction. He buys you back.  He pays your debt. He lifts you up out of the pit. Ultimately that’s pointing to the grave. There is no grave that can hold the one whom God loves. He redeems your life from the pit. And here’s the part I want us to focus on for a few minutes.
Romantic love vs. committed love, so what’s the difference? Definitely sharing some things, romantic love and committed love differ in a lot of places as well. Romantic love is more of being in lust, but not in love, you’re merely in love with the idea of being in love, it’s not real, it’s really just an illusion.  When they’re first in love they are blinded by everything else. They only focus on the one person that matters. But really this is just an illusion, they meet this person for the first time and they have an open canvas to place their imagination on who they think that person should be. So they fall in love with the thought of the person. When romantically in love they change your priorities, they are only focused on their partner, they also start to get new characteristics. They start to mood swings, their energy increases and also their sympathetic nervous system starts to kick in. The sympathetic system causes their heart pounds, their  hands get sweaty, they have an increased sexual desire to be with that person. start to change in many different ways.
I’ve never understood why people always consider Love as a separate entity from Commitment/Partnership/Companionship. I’ve always believed that Love goes beyond that butterfly-in-the-stomach feeling. My high school English teacher mentioned to us once that Love is a choice – much like the way that happiness is a state of mind (not pertaining to those who are clinically depressed, etc, of course). So it always upsets me when people tease the two concepts apart. Love IS Commitment. It’s a conscious process of choosing to be with someone. Anything less than that is lust of infatuation, and does not deserve to be called Love.
And as we have the privilege today to rejoice with some of our brothers and sisters who are taking a big step of baptism, we get to see this pictured in baptism. Part of what’s happening… the water doesn’t save anybody. It’s Christ who saves by grace through faith. But when a person is buried in the likeness of his death, raised in the likeness of his resurrection, we get a picture of hesed love of God, the loyal, committed, covenantal love. It wasn’t anything that person did that earned that love. It was the free love of God committed to that individual to rescue them.
The cofounder of an Internet startup, Burton spends his days coding in Wi-Fi-enabled cafés and using his AIM Sniffer to keep an eye on all the data traveling over the cafés' networks. Between marathon Java-thrashing sessions, he often finds he wants to introduce himself to "a cute girl with a laptop" but is too shy to make an approach. That's where the Sniffer comes in handy. If a hottie fires up her AOL Instant Messenger client, Burton sees her login name and can send her an IM. "I've gotten several first dates that way," he says. "Women think it's cute when I can make a message pop on their machine as if by magic. Now that so many women are online, it's our chance as geeks to start getting more dates."
Here’s another hack for how to feel good in your life. For forty-five days, experiment with lowering the bar in areas where you have set yourself impossible goals and raising the bar in places where you’ve set it so low that you feel no reward. If you feel you have no choice between frozen dinners and gourmet banquets, define a moderate cooking goal and start your forty-five days now. If you feel you have no choice between sitting on the couch and walking the red carpet, try going out in a middle-of-the-road way, and then try another way.
Vacations usually happen over the course of several days and can sometimes take several weeks, so if you’re going to take company along you’ll want to make sure you really like them. You’re also making memories that last for a lifetime. Generally speaking, people who take vacations together not only enjoy each other’s company, but are happy to make memories together, so if you take vacations together it’s a good sign that you and your love are truly committed.
Live in the moment. Another trick to being happier is to learn to embrace the present moment instead of feeling regret for the past or dreading the future. Learn to enjoy the conversations you have, instead of thinking about where you’re going to go next or worrying about that thing you said twenty minutes ago. Learn to appreciate the things in front of you, the good time you’re having, and to cast away all thoughts of anything outside of your immediate experience. Obviously, this takes a lot of dedication, but you’ll see your happiness level rise dramatically once you get the hang of it.[2]
More than 26,000 people responded. All of the participants were randomly assigned to one of a handful of groups and asked to carry out various exercises designed to make them happier… When it came to increasing happiness, those altering their facial expressions came out on top of the class— powerful evidence that the As If principle can generate emotions outside the laboratory and that such feelings are long-lasting and powerful.
The rationale: Models give us templates for how to be better people. When we seek success and happiness, it’s best to look at how others have achieved the same thing. As Jim Rohn often said, “Success breeds clues.” If someone is repeatedly successful, it’s not just luck. Watch your role model work, see how they do it and then replicate to achieve the same result. The same rationale can be applied to happiness.
35That the public codification of the category romance novel’s materiality revolves around a generic interpretation is no surprise given the commercial character of popular fiction. As scholars such as John Cawelti and Ken Gelder have argued, the field of popular fiction is much more preoccupied with the notion of genre than that of literary fiction :
When I was growing up in my small town in Connecticut, my favorite neighbors were a white-haired husband and wife named Arthur and Lillian Webster. The Websters were local dairy farmers who lived by an inviolable set of classic Yankee values. They were modest, frugal, generous, hardworking, unobtrusively religious, and socially discreet members of the community who raised their three children to be good citizens. They were also enormously kind. Mr. Webster called me “Curly” and let me ride my bike for hours on their nicely paved parking lot. Mrs. Webster—if I was very good—would sometimes let me play with her collection of antique medicine bottles.

As a reader of mysteries and science fiction, I find the series masterful. Debora Geary has a rare talent for grabbing your attention with caring and loving characters that jump out of the pages as real and not "characters." There are no sword-fights; no facing down evil villains (other than that within ourselves), but rather the drama of real life and real people who care deeply about each other and the world they live in. Perhaps the depth of their feelings is enhanced by magic, but I want to believe the emotions they display reside in all of us. If Geary's world is fantasy, then I want to be part of this world. This is world of hope and love and joy, as well as pain, anguish and fear. And, in Geary's world, life wins. This is a world where life is a journey, and it is the journey together that matters. There are missteps, mistakes, anger and fear. The tears and the pain are real. The joy, however, is refreshing and shows a way for life to be worth living. Thank you Debora Geary for creating a world I am happy to inhabit, even when the characters are afraid, frightened or in emotional pain. Their journey is worth sharing.
The romance comics craze caught on slowly at DC . . . . When DC finally attempted a full-fledged love title, editor in chief Irwin Donnenfeld made the unprecedented decision to hire a woman as editor. “The romance magazines really appealed to young girls,” he says, “so I felt a woman would have a better handle on what a young girl would like, better than a guy like Bon Kanigher, who was doing war books.”
9 While the clinch image is the most common image on the front cover of the category romance novel, other types of images include an image of a single person (most frequently a man) or a more domestic image of a couple with children or pets. For a (non-academic) discussion of these other types of romance front cover iconography, see Wendell and Tan 176-177.
Notice, talk about, and write about what does feel good in your life today. It could be the pancakes for breakfast, the call to or from a dear friend, yoga at the gym, the flowers you saw on your walk, your good vision and hearing, the cleared desk or table, or anything that leads you to more peace and contentment. I sometimes read my list of gratitudes when I’m feeling grumpy or overextended. When I take a few moments to focus on what does feel good, I’m usually much more able to settle down and do what feels important to do.
While I liked the premise of this book, I assumed it would read more like a memoir than a history book. It would have been great to see more of Liz throughout the pages but I learned a few interesting things along the way. I'd recommend reading with a critical eye, it is an interesting viewpoint from someone that is not convinced that the institution of marriage is a recipe for love, happiness, or fulfillment.
Your body has three layers of muscles. When you vary your exercise, you give the neglected, constricted layers more attention. Since they’re weak, they have to work harder, so you stimulate development where it’s needed instead of going overboard on the parts you overuse. Chasing an endorphin high is not worth the risk of wearing out a part and needing a parts replacement. Variety is a great alternative and one of the best ways to feel better.
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Make time for “me time.” If you want to feel happier, then you have to spend more time thinking about yourself. This doesn’t mean you should be completely selfish, but it does mean that you should schedule times when you can just be alone with your own thoughts, ideas, and favorite activities. Your life may be hectic, but there’s always time to squeeze in a half hour or an hour here and there just to be by yourself, whether you’re taking a walk, writing in a journal, or just reflecting on the week.
In my opinion I believe if someone wants to be inclusive, and says that they love you but you where included in their family events, then the ex see's you then the lies and manipulations begins. Either one strings the other one along while doing as they please either trying to keep everyone happy.....ie themselves living 2 or more lives, these individuals need to spotted out and called out.
23However, the impact of the line template extends far beyond the front cover. The back cover is designed in a very similar fashion, which makes for books that look altogether very similar (see figure 4). Indeed, as we can see in these examples, it is hardly possible to visually distinguish these individual books from each other. The imposing visual similarity seems to effectively stifle any claim to a more singularized interpretation that the book’s back cover traditionally develops. The same compositional principle also applies to the materiality inside the book, which, much like its outside cover, is designed on the basis of the line template. Category romances published in the same line consequently share the same font, font size, composition of the title page, foreword, etc. In other words, they all look quite similar.
This book made me look at marriage and commitment in a whole new light. So interesting to learn how less Westernized cultures view the dynamic of marriage and the role it plays in their personal lives and in the community - all while following her personal journey and the thoughts she wrestles with. There are points of merit and value to be taken to heart from these societies, which I loved.
In our passage for this week, Philippians 2:1-11, we are shown how Jesus is the perfect example of what committed love looks like. In verses 1-4, Paul is encouraging the church at Philippi to have love for one another – but not just any kind of love – committed love. He continues in verses 5-11, using Jesus as the standard as to what commitment looks like.
Code Romantic uses a connection to the internet in order to deliver anonymous telemetry data. We use this data to make the puzzles better. There are elements of Code Romantic that are used to track its potential effectiveness as an educational tool; no identifiable information of our users is collected or saved. There are no advertisements in Code Romantic.
This rite of committed relationship passage is so iconic that entire movie scenes and magazine articles have been dedicated to its discussion. If one or both of you have keys to the other’s house, you’re in! I mean, how many people have keys to your place? Chances are not many, but if they do and they’re not your parents, it’s a good sign you’re in a committed relationship.
The simple answer is that Kirby’s romance comics are not as accessible as his efforts in other, more action-oriented genres such as science-fiction, western or super-hero comics. The more complicated answer is that romance comics are too close to real life. After all, how realistic is it that a reader would encounter savage Indians, bug-eyed monsters or costumed supermen in their day to day lives? Uncluttered by such unrealistic distractions, romance comics are free to explore the more quiet drama of real life—the incidents, heartbreaks, and human conflicts that are actually encountered in the lives of their readers. Thus romance comics have had the perfect camouflage: Made up of the familiar details of daily life, they have not stood out. Instead, they have receded in the minds of readers as their more colorful competitors on the magazine racks have loomed ever larger in their more exaggerated presentations.

And while it is undisputed that Young Romance created the romance genre in comics, I think honorable mention should also be given to Calling All Girls published by Parent’s Magazine, which debuted in July, 1941. Primarily filled with comics, Calling All Girls was the first comic to be marketed to girls. Calling All Girls also contained short stories and advice on fashion and manners. Calling All Girls contained some of the earliest romance stories (mostly in text form) and bridged the gap between pulps and comics. As a result of paper shortages, Calling All Girls stopped including comics in January 1946, the year before Young Romance was released. Interestingly, neither Parents Magazine nor Calling All Girls would get back into the romance comics business even at the height of the popularity of the genre in 1950.
Love isn't rational. It can't be controlled. If you allow a feeling that is so emotional and malleable to dictate your behaviour, you'll realise quickly that it only pans out when things are up, not when they're down. Commitment on the other hand, will guide you through both. Commitment is not dependant on the heartstrings, it's dependant on a conscious choice you make - and that, is something you have complete control over.

When I meet Vuong for lunch at a hip LA diner near Beverly Hills, it's clear he's not kidding. As soon as we sit down, he whips out his laptop to show off its 12-hour battery. He tells me about the Grid. "It's just like bioinformatics, where you're searching for a sequence of code in a pool of DNA," he explains. "But the DNA is all the Web pages in the world."

Believe me, modern Western marriage has much to recommend it over traditional Hmong marriage (starting with its kidnapping-free spirit), and I will say it again: I would not trade lives with those women. They will never know my range of freedom; they will never have my education; they will never have my health and prosperity; they will never be allowed to explore so many aspects of their own natures. But there is one critical gift that a traditional Hmong bride almost always receives on her wedding day which all too often eludes the modern Western bride, and that is the gift of certainty. When you have only one path set before you, you can generally feel confident that it was the correct path to have taken. And a bride whose expectations for happiness are kept necessarily low to begin with is more protected, perhaps, from the risk of devastating disappointments down the road.


13Genette identifies a crucial difference between the reception and interpretation of the (narrative) text and the (material) paratext of a book. Whereas the former is targeted at a very specific (and ideal) kind of reader, who has the background knowledge necessary to understand and unlock the text, the latter is directed at a far more substantive and heterogeneous group of consumers without a clear-cut profile.
When I arrive at the Condomania offices to meet Filkins, he's finishing up some business on the phone. I wander around his workspace while he talks, peering with mild trepidation into giant candy jars full of tricolor condoms and shiny plastic packets of lube. In one room, I discover a "condomenorah." Condoms of various hues and sizes are attached to nine PVC pipes arranged to resemble Hanukkah lights. Filkins joins me and grins as his colleague flips a switch, sending air through the pipes and allowing me to inspect the wares in their fully operational state.
Here we’ll cover the five principles to make you thrive, not just survive. You’ll learn how to feel happier, as well as become more focused and energized. In fact, you’ll likely find that as you work toward becoming a more joyful version of yourself, your efforts will quickly spill over into all aspects of your life, making you happier and more fulfilled overall:
6Category romances are published in the mass-market paperback format that is typically used for genre fiction in the English-speaking world. The category romance is an (in)famously cheap book that is available “wherever women shop” (as Harlequin’s decades-old tagline boasts). This includes venues outside of the traditional literary circuit, such as supermarkets, grocery stores, newsstands and gas stations. Almost all category romances are published by the Canadian publisher Harlequin (or its subsidiaries Silhouette and Mills & Boon), which releases over a hundred category romances each month in a wide variety of lines all over the world.4
Think about buying toilet paper in 7-Eleven. It will likely be one brand, in one-roll quantities, and it will likely cost you four bucks. 7-Eleven is a great chain of stores, but they excel at convenience, not low price or variety. What does this mean? If you badly need a roll of toilet paper, you’ll take the individually wrapped roll of Scott’s they have and forego your desire to get the Charmin Ultra Soft you normally prefer. (Which, at the risk of oversharing, is my favorite.)
“He died,” she said coolly, and that settled it. Her father had died of death. The way people used to die, I suppose, before we knew very much about why or how. “When he died, we ate the water buffalo at his funeral.” At this memory, her face flashed a complicated array of emotions: sadness at the loss of her father, pleasure at the remembrance of how good the water buffalo had tasted.
That said, we have to be careful, too, not to assume that all arranged marriages across history, or all pragmatic marriages, or all marriages that begin with an act of kidnapping, necessarily resulted in years of contentment. The Websters were lucky, to an extent. (Though they also put a good deal of work into their marriage, one suspects.) But what Mr. Webster and the Hmong people perhaps have in common is a notion that the emotional place where a marriage begins is not nearly as important as the emotional place where a marriage finds itself toward the end, after many years of partnership. Moreover, they would likely agree that there is not one special person waiting for you somewhere in this world who will make your life magically complete, but that there are any number of people (right in your own community, probably) with whom you could seal a respectful bond. Then you could live and work alongside that person for years, with the hope that tenderness and affection would be the gradual outcome of your union.
Spend more time pursuing your passion. Anyone would feel happier if he or she spent more time doing the thing he or she really loved. If you’re a photography fanatic, spend more time taking pictures. If you love to write poems, wake up half an hour earlier each morning to work on your craft. If you love cooking, make time to cook at least twice a week. You may not think that pursuing your passion is a worthy pursuit when you have so many more “practical” things to consider, but it will definitely make an impact on your level of happiness.
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