Here's a little brain teaser from an economics podcast I just finished that was discussing work. Used to be, not that long ago, that work was considered work, and marriages were for practical reasons as much as anything else. In fact, lots of jobs were physically grinding and even dangerous in the recent past, even this past century.
Now, in the modern world, everything seems to be about Jefferson's famous words in the Declaration of Independence: "the pursuit of happiness." (Superficially, this sounds Buddhist, but I think the results from pursuing happiness can be anything but.) Work is supposed to cause deep personal happiness and fulfillment, and ditto for marriage. High expectations, indeed!
Now that we have an expectation of finding happiness and fulfillment in our work and our marriages, has that expectation caused an increase in actual happiness, or not? Or would it perhaps be better to start with a realistic view -- namely, work is work; marriage brings many conveniences with it, and is about much more than romantic love. Then the happiness could blossom on its own, without being fruitlessly pursued as an end in itself.
I don't know, this suddenly sounds like a dull blog entry; kind of like how my mind is when I'm tired. So let me at least post a couple of pretty pictures!
Now here's a happy memory, or maybe I should say a very meaningful one -- touring the World War II and other magnificent monuments in Washington, D.C., this summer.