The rantings of a beautiful mind

On life, society, and computer technology.

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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I live in the Fortress of Solitude. I drive the Silver Beast. My obsession is justice. I used to be a Windows software developer. I retired in 2000 when my stock options helped me achieve financial security.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Funny Anecdote

“Show me one couple unhappy merely on account of their limited circumstances,” wrote Samuel Taylor Coleridge, “and I will show you ten who are wretched from other causes.”

As examples of the latter, one thinks of Howard Hughes, Christina Onassis, or J. Paul Getty. Or Erno Rubik, whose puzzle cube transformed him overnight from a $150-a-month professor of design to Hungary’s richest person. The toy he built in his room in his mother’s apartment perplexed half a billion people, yet left its taciturn inventor unable to solve the greater puzzle of happiness. While he was showing interviewer John Tierney through his new house, with its pool and sauna and three-car garage and Mercedes, the never-smiling Rubik’s emotions were as gray as the sky. Noting that Rubik eliminated the dining room when remodeling his house, Tierney wondered: “Do you plan to have many people over to dinner?” Puffing on a cigarette and gazing out a window, Rubik frowned. “I hope not.”

- The Pursuit of Happiness