Let's get the definition out of the way:

Happiness is that feeling that comes over you when you know life is good and you can't help but smile. It's the opposite of sadness. Happiness is a sense of well-being, joy, or contentment. When people are successful, or safe, or lucky, they feel happiness

Happiness is NOT, money, power, fame or physical prowess.

But whatever Happiness is, it is fleeting and amorphous. It is a state of mind. It is the sum of its components. It is also measured on a sliding scale of sorts.

What makes me happy? Is that a trick question? On that sliding scale that I mentioned, I am happy. Let's say that I live within my own bubble of happy.

Within my bubble, I am healthy, a relative term I grant you, but I'm 71 and don't look it, I'm told. I am financially secure. I have a good wife and a wonderful family. I have friends. I can do what I want with my time -- within the bounds of where my bubble intersects with other’s bubbles of happy within the grand Venn diagram of personal interactions.

My bubble intersects with the bubble of happy of others around me. As they affect my bubble, so do I affect theirs. My happy meter climbs when others do no harm to my happy and it climbs when I know that I do no harm to theirs; and higher even, if their happy meter climbs because of something I did for them.

Could I be happier? Sure. Could I be less happy and, yet, still count myself as happy? Also, sure.

I'd be happy if I always made those around me happy; not necessarily happier, but happy. I'd be happy if I hit the lottery; not necessarily happier, but happy. I'd be happy if the house had less clutter; not necessarily happier, but happy. I'd be happy with more hair and less weight; not necessarily happier, but happy. Get the idea?

To me, happiness is that point when the scales of life tip in the direction of better, rather than worse. I can handle an occasional not-so-good when my cup of goods runs over. I try not to sweat the small stuff. Fifty years from now, I'll be nothing more than a photo in some album. So, in the end -- it's all small stuff.

I'm not sure if, once happy, you can ever be happier. Maybe happier is just happy in bold print. And, if there are happy and happier, there must be a happiest; and I would be hard pressed to define happiest. After all, could I be happy if I knew that I was as happy as I ever could be?

Ya'll have a fine day, now. Y'hear?