Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The Hal Podger Society

From now on, I plan to model my life on that of Hal Podger. Who was this Podger fellow? You haven’t heard of him because he was an ordinary man, who worked for General Electric for over thirty years. But Podger also achieved something more difficult than winning a Nobel Prize: he was happy. In fact, we should all hope to lead lives that deserve an obituary headline similar to his: “Hal Podger—a perennially happy man, married 65 years.” Podger married his high-school sweetheart and had six children. He loved cha-cha and home repair. In fact, if he was at a friend’s house for dinner and a door squeaked, “he’d run for his toolbox, humming and singing.” Whenever you asked him how he was, he always replied: “Faaaaaaan-TASTIC!!!”

OK, Hal was probably a bit annoying. No doubt, he was one of those people who won’t say a bad word about others behind their backs (people like that really irritate me). Plus sometimes you just want a friend to get drunk with while listening to Death Cab for Cutie—not someone who does the cha-cha while he unblocks your drain. And then there’s the biggest question of all: Was Hal truly happy? Or was Podger just a Pollyanna, like our friend Mr. Best-Ever, someone whose cheeriness masked loneliness and self-doubt?

I prefer to believe that Hal was indeed happy, and that in the picture accompanying his obit, his smile is genuine. In this rainiest of Marches, we need some inspiration. So in homage to Hal, I am starting the Hal Podger Society, a society of those who aspire to be Podgers—perennially happy people. The Podgers do not evangelize, they simply promote Podgerism by example. Next time you ask me how I am, the answer will be: “Faaaaaaaan-TASTIC!!!”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hal Podger was a great guy, and If joining "The Hal Podger Society" and being happy is a tribute to Podgerism I want to be a Podger.

6:02 PM  

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