THE HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH…IS DENMARK

denmark happy

Move over, Disney World. I know being the “happiest place on earth” is basically your tagline, but you’ve got no seat in the United Nations, so technically your slogan is libel. However, I do have a constant love affair with your dear movies so I won’t file anything against you.

Every year the UN published its World Happiness Report, and in honor of celebrating World Happiness Day this week (by wallowing in my Millennial mid-college crisis and day-drinking), I might as well find some happiness in the happiest country in the world– Denmark. Yes, Denmark, the home of the most miserable, suicidal teenager himself, Hamlet. There is even a word in their language that embodies the Danish culture of coziness and happiness, called hygge. In the American culture, the closest phrase equivalent to hygge is probably supersize me. The spirit of hygge is incomprehensible to the American culture being that the best way we feel happy is when we’re sitting alone on a Sunday night watching the latest episode of whatever we paused last week on Netflix. Denmark, however, is all about the happiness of being together with friends and family and the warm feeling you get when you’re drunk.

The countries in Scandinavia are all about its people. In New York City, trying to cross an intersection in Manhattan is the jungle equivalent of fighting for your own life. If it’s DON’T WALK, you can totally walk but at other people’s risk. Scandinavians are all about the social responsibility. They don’t lock their bikes. If no one locks a bike in Brooklyn for five minutes, it would already be sold on EBay in ten minutes or become an interpretive art piece at the MoMa in ten seconds. Biking is a way of life in Copenhagen, which makes it no surprise that it is the #1 Smartest City in the World, according to Fast Company. So they’re energy efficient and have a low carbon footprint. I’d like to see your SAT scores some time, Denmark. Oh, the US still ranks lower than Denmark in education.

There is no shame in conversation in Denmark which means that “small talk,” is a chance for you to finally say your age, how much you earn, and what you really think about Miley Cyrus. That’s all according to the humorous tales from the Xenophobe’s Guide to the Danes. After recently coming back from Denmark, my mindset didn’t change but I may have been a bit angry at the Danish for being just so damn happy.

Denmark’s happy. Norway’s happy. Sweden’s happy. That’s it. They’re all just happy. They love each other and find nirvana from just being around other people. They don’t have anything else to worry about. Americans are all just finding happiness, whatever that word means. It’s basically why everyone comes to America, is to find happiness. That’s the point of the American Dream, right? Only to find out that you’re on your own and you’ve got to find your own way yourself and know where you’re going, Alice. Maybe that’s too heavy a subject. I’ll save it for small talk the next time I go back to a coffee shop in Copenhagen.

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PINTEREST, YOUR BEST FRIEND WHO DOESN’T ANSWER YOUR TEXTS

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Pinterest is that cool girl in school that you want to be seen walking with down the hallway. She texts you, like, all the time. At first you loved it when she emailed you, “Let’s hang out on the lawn,” but then after two weeks, you stopped responding because you saw the lawn and there were already 40,000 girls there. She obviously doesn’t need you to come to the lawn, even though you know there’d be amazing, tiny cookies shaped like butterflies and characters from GIRLS. You’re tempted to text her back, but you know she’ll keep texting you anyway to invite you to a Gatsby-themed party with vintage beads and pink chandeliers.

That one time when it was raining, you almost, almost made a “My Dream Wedding” board with Pinterest. You started looking for backyard/country themed reception spots and the top 10 places to have your rehearsal dinners in New York City. You almost went down the rabbit hole of picking which minimalist, yet fantasy wedding dress you’d get, but you realized, “Wait. This is Pinterest. What am I doing? It stopped raining 3 hours ago.”

Things got a bit weird with you two when FANCY started to get into the picture. FANCY was the hipster boy you couldn’t stop scrolling down on. He was a bit geeky, but in the hot way. He knew the latest gadgets, like the weird new heating mug that came from Japan. Pinterest stepped up her game and e-mailed you some more. FANCY was still cool, but not as popular as Pinterest. Everyone knew who Pinterest was, so you decided to hang out with her again since it was more convenient to link with your original friends, Facebook and Twitter. They all clicked.

You’re always tempted to hang out with Pinterest, even though you know she’s too perfect and you’ll never be able to make that vegan spinach crepe with toasted almonds recipe with her. She sends you another email saying, “It’s a mason jar party!”

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