“Don’t cry over spilled groceries!”


One of my favorite Earth Fare stories involves (very peripherally) me (an Earth Fare cashier), sitting on the curb around the side of the building past the Green Sage restaurant – having my lunch. Two young Asian (best as I can tell) women come walking from the grocery store, across the parking lot, carrying one very full bag of groceries. (I never fill a bag that full – they would definitely have carried out two bags of groceries from me, unless they had demanded only one, in which case I would have given them my standard, only-partly-tongue-in-cheek disclaimer, “The Earth Fare company is no longer responsible for the safety of your groceries. If the bag breaks, it’s all on you. 

As these two girls are walking across the parking lot, their bag does actually break! It doesn’t just break – it positively explodes, and groceries go shooting in all directions! I’m a little holding my breath to see how these poor young women respond to such a setback.

And they laughed! They laughed hysterically! They laughed like this was one of the funniest things they had seen in their whole lives! Every time I tell this story – of their “unreasonable happiness” – I feel happy.guy with hand on face

About ten minutes ago, as I was taking my generic Zyrtec allergy medicine (I’m allergic to my dog), I – in my ill state – dropped by pill bottle and little white pills exploded everywhere. I looked down – at these little white pills all around and on top of my stockinged feet – and I started to laugh! The whole scene looked really funny! I laughed until I snorted and made all kinds of random noises. I thought back to those two girls and felt proud to be in their lineage. This made me even happier.

Michael Singer’s definition of “enlightened” is “unreasonably happy” – happy that does not require any particular reason for being happy, happy that cannot be dented by spilled groceries or little white pills, or even sometimes bigger things than that. You may have pain or sadness or all kinds of human reactions – but then you eventually do (and always knew that you would) return to your baseline of happiness.

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