A Precocious Toddler’s Ruminations On “If You’re Happy And You Know It”
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August 23, 2017

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands!

Wait, how am I supposed to know if I’m happy? I must have missed the day Miss Emma revealed to us all the true nature of happiness. Too bad I missed that and not the ten thousandth day of finger-painting.

Certainly there’ve been plenty of times I thought I was happy: for instance, when I got into that bag of Oreos and gobbled them all down in like five minutes. But that kind of happiness, believe you me, is transient.

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands!

Can I be happy without knowing it? Or, conversely, what if my belief that I’m happy is false? I’ve never read Daniel Gilbert. I can’t even read! But what if self-reported emotional states are a bunch of bullshit?

I mean, I thought the Oreos made me happy, but when my tummy started hurting I was all like ix-nay on the appiness-hay. And a minute later, as I was spewing semi-liquid Oreos onto the living room carpet, happiness was but a distant memory.

Mommy was about as happy as I was right then. She said she could think of better uses for club soda. I don’t even know what that means!

But maybe emotions are subjective. Maybe happiness is merely ignorant self-delusion. I mean, my God, what if I’m happier puking than eating Oreos?

That, friends, is twisted.

If you’re happy and you know it and you really want to show it …

I am, frankly, uncomfortable with the assumption here. Even if it’s true that I’m happy and I know it, why would I want to show it?

And what’s up with the really? Perhaps it’s a warning. Like the time I kept grabbing Fluffy by the tail. She hissed and bared her claws, and Daddy asked: Are you sure you really want to keep doing that?

And am I seriously supposed to believe that every single one of us in Miss Emma’s preschool group just happen, simultaneously and purely by coincidence, to: a) be happy, b) know it, and c) really (really!) want to show it, all at the same time? Even Sarah, who was wailing like a banshee not three minutes ago, who still has an enthusiastic gusher of snot spilling from her left nostril? Even Bobby … even after what happened to his pants shortly after lunch? What a load of crap.

Pun intended!

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands!

Don’t tell me what to do!

Seriously.  Let us, for the sake of argument, suppose that I am happy, know it, and really want to show it. Fine.

But what if that happiness comes from freedom?

See, I derive my deepest pleasure from scampering around, shoving everything that fits into my mouth, and screaming “NO!” at the top of my lungs. That, friends, is living. Notice that nowhere in there did I mention how much I love following orders like a brainwashed automaton.

Wouldn’t it be ironic if, in complying with the song’s directives, I negate the very same happiness I am supposedly expressing? Nay, more than mere irony, it’d be downright cruel and perverse. Surely the song’s purveyors know what they’re doing: teaching small children to express themselves only in a uniform, grown-up approved manner, without regard to the purity of our feelings.

This abomination cannot stand. I am resolved to rebel against the tyranny of the song. Miss Emma and all the grown-ups can go fuck themselves. Next time they tell me to clap my hands, I will defy them by … um, hmmm, let’s see: I’ve got it. Oh yeah, this is a good one. Listen to this:

Stomping my feet.

That’s right, bitches. You heard me. Stomping my motherfucking feet.

They’ll say “clap your hands” and I will express my complete disdain, my utter contempt for their socially prescribed rules and directions by stomping my feet.

It’s brilliant! Genius! Capitol! Oh, this will be delicious!

If you’re happy and you know it stomp your feet.

Say WHAT?

I’m going to take a nap. This song is a mind fuck.

 

 
 

The Higgs Weldon is a humor website with funny stories, articles, cartoons, and one liners. It was started by the Los Angeles stand-up comedy community, but takes submissions from everybody. Please read and enjoy our jokes!


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