Tag Archives: happiness

walk like a dinosaur.

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The T-Rex Walking Club parades in Ferndale,MI

The T-Rex Walking Club takes a stroll to bring joy during the coronavirus pandemic.  A silly and secret club formed during the pandemic is on a quest to bring smiles to the faces of kids, and a few adults, while under Michigan’s stay home order.

On Friday, when Governor Gretchen Whitmer extended Michigan’s order, there was parade of a pink unicorn, followed by a gentle giraffe, a ferocious bear, a swinging stegosaurus, Scooby-Doo and a shark too, a tall pterodactyl, a trotting triceratops, a black-and-white penguin, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, a friendly T-Rex, another penguin, and a one-eyed Minion.

This motley crew, which calls itself the Ferndale T-Rex Walking Club, takes its unannounced strolls through neighborhoods. There are other characters, too, and a few members have costumes on order. On their next walks, you might see an additional unicorn, more sharks, a polar bear, a gorilla, a Godzilla, an alligator, a hippo, a flamingo, a zebra, and an upside-down clown.

Most members of the club are also members of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.The point of the parade, is to cheer up the community during otherwise gloomy times and get children and adults to smile, said Oscar Renautt, who heads the Elks public relations committee.

The T-Rex club has its own set of rules. You must be invited; have an enclosed, inflatable costume; wear a face mask; and you can never, ever tell anyone where — or when — the group is going to go walking.

The founder, Ms. Ignash, received her pink unicorn costume one Christmas, has had it for years, and she’d occasionally show up somewhere in it for a laugh. Then, she posted the article in Facebook for local residents and they thought it was a good idea. Folks asked her to organize an event, so she did. It was right after the stay-at-home order, and within two hours, close to 200 people were interested. 

Ignash decided that it was a totally crazy idea, and irresponsible to create crowds of people during a pandemic, so she canceled the event, and started over. Instead, she created a private group and invited just a couple of friends to join her. They went on a walk in costume, and then another, and another, adding a few friends — and characters — each time. 

The costumes are so big that they naturally require the walkers to space out about six-feet apart, a social distancing requirement of the governor’s order. They also don’t want to spread the virus so they wear masks.Visibility inside isn’t so good either, and it can get hot inside the costume. So they don’t walk for too long. “But, it’s fun because kids really freak out,” Ignash said. “They see us coming, or they hear other people talking about us coming, and kids freak out. Its fun, just so much fun.”

credits: Frank Witsil- Detroit Free Press, Ferndale Elks Club

“a procession is a participants’ journey, while a parade is a performance with an audience.”

 Rebecca Solnit, Wanderlust: A History of Walking

extraordinary.

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what a surprise and delight

it was to meet peter

(who is known as jonathan when in trouble)

the proprietor of a tiny shop near the beach.

how was i to know

that he was

a visiting nurse

a gentle spirit

a master

of local lore, directions, recommendations

who worries about what will happen to his store

when he is gone

and wonders

if the people who take it over 

will be able to make enough money

 in spite of some adversity

he was brimming

with happiness and passion

as we spoke at length 

about the joys of sea glass

with all of its pits and scratches and imperfections

that only serve to prove

 it’s the real thing

having survived

a long and challenging journey

having arrived at last

on a soft and sandy shore

collected by hands

that appreciate it for all of its beauty

exactly as it is

and he was extraordinary.

“for me, the difference between an ‘ordinary’ and an ‘extraordinary’ person

is not the title that person might have,

but what they do to make the world a better place for us all.”

-jody williams

 

 

 

 

wells, maine – august 2019

happiness expert.

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the following job title popped up on my alumni website

and made me curious to learn just what a ‘happiness expert’ is exactly.

now that I know, I think that my definition is a very different one

though you can never have too much happiness.

 

Happiness Expert

Full-Time Position
Description

We do more than just provide a software product to our campus partners. We provide a full experience to ensure their happiness and success, and you’ll be right there with them along the way as their own personal expert.

What You’ll Do:

  • Develop a lasting rapport with our campus partners, from coordinators to directors, deans to vice presidents, and beyond
  • Learn the unique needs and challenges of each campus that you work with and develop strategies that are centered around our solutions to address them
  • Manage the orientation process for campuses using our frameworks and learning outcomes, while infusing your own unique experiences
  • Help out our Happiness Allies by responding quickly and accurately to inbound conversations from our campus partners to answer their questions, complete with plenty of emojis and GIFs
  • Efficiently solve problems that users encounter by recreating them in a test environment
  • Ensure the quality and functionality of our software by completing user testing of new features, enhancements, and bug fixes (you’ll be the first to see all of the cool new stuff we’re building!)
  • Facilitate customer growth and success by staying up-to-date on current trends in higher education.
  • Created with Passion by Former Practitioners – We help student affairs professionals and student leaders on college and university campuses across the world create better communities, campus cultures, and student experiences. As former student affairs professionals and involved student leaders, we have a deep understanding of the industry and its most chronic problems. We’ve lived them! We’re growing fast, and would love your help making it happen!
Qualifications- You just might be our next Happiness Expert, if:

You have:

• Worked on campus as a student leader
• An intimate understanding of, and passion for, our software and the problems it solves
• An affinity for all things technology. You love to be the first to try out shiny new software
• An uncanny ability to develop and maintain relationships with your new best friends (aka our partner institutions)
• The desire and ability to work with all types of people, both on your team and with our campus partners

And you:

• Are a great listener, challenge the industry status quo, and question everything
• Have an open mind — you love trying new things, generating new ideas, and don’t mind failing
• Get excited by meeting and talking to new people, building relationships, and helping out
• Have an exceptional eye for organization in everything that you do
• Regularly self-reflect, practice self-awareness, self-motivation, and setting strategy
• Take joy and pride in setting and exceeding goals
• Are excited to push our growth forward!

“some cause happiness wherever they go,
some cause happiness whenever they go.”
-oscar wilde

sing.

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what a wonderful surprise

when at my salon

in the midst of the day’s music

‘say my name’ came on

 one of the stylists

began singing along

 before long

some of the staff

joined in

clients were

at least smiling if not singing

the space was filled with

song and dance and laughter

a sudden burst of happiness for no reason

the best kind

the woman cutting my hair

asked out loud

“why not?”

exactly.

“the only thing better than singing is more singing. 

-ella fitzgerald

 

 

 

image credit: john drysdale, 1978, london, england

courage.

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Boars🐗, frogs🐸, naga🐲, lions🦁and tigers🐯 and elephants🐘, oh my! 

During the BBC’s coverage of the ongoing cave rescue operation in Thailand, they came across this adorable cartoon by Bangkok-based illustrators Sisidea, which caught their attention after it was shared on Facebook by the Thai Navy Seal team. 

This is what Aruni Aunhawarakorn and Jantima Manasviyoungkul (the people who drew the picture) had to say:  “We are so, so happy at the news and our cartoon shows our appreciation from the Thai people – to everyone around the world who have been involved in the search as well as those [unsung heroes] who haven’t been mentioned.” 

“from caring comes courage.”

-lao tzu

 

 

 

credits: bbc news, thai navy seal team, sisidea