One of the things I do for fun is to serve as Master of Ceremonies for the Castle Rock Band. The band, under Bandmaster Kent Brandebery, was formed in 1999, and plays concerts at the Castle Rock Community Bandstand, the Douglas County Fair, and other occasional locations.
Mainly, my job is to let these fine musicians catch their breath. To pass the time, I talk about the history of the next piece -- that research usually provided by the Bandmaster. Along the way, I've had the chance to learn a little bit about the American band movement.
I was talking with a friend last night about the social effects of technology. He was saying that people today, mainly because of technology, live incredibly accelerated lives. And we're overstimulated.
We rush from one place to another, never really having the time to focus, to pay attention. Along the way we have radios, CDs, DVD players -- and that's just in the car.
Suppose that there were a simple formula for happiness?
Well, according to Jonathan Haidt, there is. In his book, "The Happiness
Hypothesis," he just gives it away:
H = S + C + V
Any questions? I thought there might be.
H stands for "happiness."
S stands for "set point." That's the idea that you're more or less genetically
programmed to have a range of responses to the world, broadly falling into
either optimistic or pessimistic.
A couple of years ago, we were working on the design of our Philip S. Miller Library in Castle Rock. To that end, we did what we always do: talk with the community.
We held meetings with seniors, elementary school students, civic groups, and storytime moms. We listened to business people and government workers. Over and over, we asked, "What do you want to see in a library?"
There was a lot of overlap. Everybody wanted us to have books, books, and more books. Another strong contingent asked for recorded books -- on audiotape and CD.