Friday, 27 April 2007

Shiny Happy People

My mum was visiting me here in Spain recently and she commented that people here don't smile. I looked around and realised that she was right! Here in La Coruña people don't walk around with happy looks on their faces. In fact, they usually have pretty grim expressions... I think it's a combination of lack of employment prospects and bad weather.

What about you? Do people smile where you live? Why? Why not?

Maybe we could put together a map of happy/unhappy places...

8 comments:

Scruffyhippo said...

I think to an extent your right about the weather, people seems to be happier when the sun shines.
going by around here in Essex Uk poelp out here in the country seem to smile more than those in the towns, which to me seem glum.

But then so would I be if I had to live next to some of them!!

Jen said...

I live in a very rural area,in a very small town in the south.

Around here people wave at you when you drive past them on the road. I think sometimes its about how connected they are to each other and the community.

I sort of like that everyone knows me when I walk down the the sidewalk and I also sort of hate it that everyone knows me when I walk down the sidewalk.

Its not always easy living in a goldfish bowl.

Mary said...

Strangers that I see going about their business in this large city don't usually have smiles on their faces. Often they have a cell phone at their ear and are intently holding a conversation with the invisble listener.

People with whom I actually interact, though, often smile, when it's appropriate.

Richie said...

It seems that city living is not conducive to happiness...

Has anyone here tried to walk around smiling? I occasionally try it but people think I'm mad. It's strange that smiling is frowned on.

PW said...

Interesting point from scruffyhippo. In Essex, I think people smile a lot. Mainly because you can make quite a good living as a builder telling grannies their roofs needs mending. (Not that I want to stereotype the good people of Essex in any way, shape or form.)

It's not always a good idea to be friendly. One of the best scenes in the Borat movie is when he gets on the subway in New York City and tries to make nice with the locals.

gonzalo said...

A possible reason for that serious face might be, apart from the weather or the employment prospects, which are clearly main reasons, the lack of confidence on others. When you smile you always nake your soul to other people, it's a way of telling someone your intentions are good. People will normally react smiling back, but cynicism can make you think in a twisted way, making you hate the smiling people. We often see examples on TV series, the most interesting characters are the ones that are a little arrogant and cynical (Dr House, Two and a half men, ...). People loves interesting people, which is almost and antonym of simple-thinking people, which usually is the happiest people.

Richie said...

PW: I really enjoyed the Borat movie, but the naked fight scene was too much for me. I still have nightmares about that...

Gonzalo: Welcome to my blog! You have a very good point that when you smile you are opening up your soul to the world.

Also, it is interesting that, at least in fiction, happy people are usually depicted as superficial and uninteresting. I guess it's difficult to make dramatic conflict using intelligent, happy people.

gonzalo said...

Hi Richie, I just came around to have a look and ... well .... you are all so smart I just had to say something smart-like, you know, big words and all that stuff.
We know each other from coruña. How's everything? I heard you had a child, could that really be? don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you can't ... well, you know ...