I am...blood. That primordial ooze. Not out there, listeners, in here. Inside this skin we wear, it only lets us think we're something else-- nice clean brains, little talking computers running around in the pursuit of happiness. We pierce this skin and what do we see Warm ooze, protoplasm churning and jesting, defecating, pulsating, life, death.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time I mean joy.
I do not know who first invented the myth of sexual equality. But it is a myth willfully fostered and nourished by certain semi-scientists and other fiction writers. And it has done more, I suspect, to unsettle marital happiness than any other false doctrine of this myth-ridden age.
I guess what I'm trying to say is, I don't think you can measure life in terms of years. I think longevity doesn't necessarily have anything to do with happiness. I mean happiness comes from facing challenges and going out on a limb and taking risks. If you're not willing to take a risk for something you really care about, you might as well be dead.
I have now reigned about 50 years in victory or peace, beloved by my subjects, dreaded by my enemies, and respected by my allies. Riches and honors, power and pleasure, have waited on my call, nor does any earthly blessing appear to have been wanting to my felicity. In this situation, I have diligently numbered the days of pure and genuine happiness which have fallen to my lot. They amount to fourteen.
If frugality were established in the state, and if our expenses were laid out to meet needs rather than superfluities of life, there might be fewer wants, and even fewer pleasures, but infinitely more happiness.
If our inward griefs were written on our brows, how many who are envied now would be pitied. It would seem that they had their deadliest foe in their own breast, and their whole happiness would be reduced to mere seeming.