We’re not a rules bunch here at the House of Hank; we’re not a particularly law and order crowd. In fact, we rate ridiculously far over to the “EXCESSIVELY OUTGOING! EMPATHETIC! EASILY EXCITABLE!” side of the various Meyers/Briggs/Jungian/name-your-cult/insert-your-guru-here personality tests. We hold almost no real estate on the law-and-order/just-the-facts side of the scale. The law-and-order folks over there don’t like us. They never like us. They hate it when we’re late. They really hate it when we forget to put the new cover sheet on the TPS reports.
Still, we do have three rules at the House. Three total. They are:
- Nobody dies.
- Nobody gets maimed.
- Everybody’s nice.
That’s it, and for 11-plus years these three rules have kept the place pretty happy, if not tidy. Tidy is for the law-and-order folks. Other rules have been proposed over the years but rejected. We just need the three, you see; they pretty much cover all eventualities.
The first two might initially seem extreme, but when you live in “This Old House” (actually “This Crappy and Ramshackle Decrepity Old House”) you know that bringing a dwelling back from the dead is like bringing creatures back from the netherworld; hazardous and stinky at best and, well, deathly at worst. Add small children and a riot of various critters to the mix and you’ve got some pretty nervous insurers as well as occasionally alarmed parents.
These three rules have kept Hank and his minions golden despite the peril. It gives the law-and-order crowd some satisfaction (though they generally don’t make it onto the property) and keeps the EASILY EXCITABLE!s from losing appendages in the chop saw.
Everybody’s nice, nobody gets maimed, live to see another day. Sounds about right.
One is happy once one knows the necessary ingredients of happiness: simple tastes, a certain degree of courage, self denial to a point, love of work, and above all, a clear conscience.