“Optimism is the madness of insisting that all is well when we are miserable.”


If I walked into my grandfather’s funeral smiling would you call me insane? Would my mother gasp in shock? Would my grandmother slowly grow a hatred for me? Would it all be forgiven if I joyfully exclaimed, “Well, I’m only being optimistic!” Of course not. I would be ridiculed for my smile.

If I wrote a school essay on all the benefits of suicide and the positive aspect of offing oneself would they hesitate to throw me in the looney bin or numb my soul with a pill because I was being positive?

Quite frankly, it’s irritating. If I’m always at the top of a hill, the only place to go is down. That is, unless I invent an airplane or hot air balloon to take me further up, but let’s be honest. I know absolutely nil about aerodynamics. My plane would crash.

I feel like optimism is just a way to disguise how unhappy these “happy” people are. At least pessimists can never get let down. They prepared for a flood and it barely even sprinkled. Everyone’s safe! No plane crashes, and if a flood ever did happen they’re already prepared.

Have you ever just blew your top off at someone. I mean screaming and throwing stuff? Unless the person punched you or the object boomeranged into you it probably felt pretty good. To just bawl at that funeral or matter of factly say, “Nope, I think suicide is stupid,” might just make you feel happy on the inside. If I walk around with only real smiles on my face, never a fake one, I feel happier. That smile, that one’s genuine. If I pull up the corners of my mouth for the sake of optimism that occasional real smile sucks. That muscle spasm of joy was obliterated. All the bubbly responses to aggravating questions murdered the J. All the forced laughter demolished the O, and the genuine smiling people who get so annoyed by the constant, cloying happiness, they will brutally violate , wreck, assassinate, butcher, annihilate, and dispatch the Y.

I love how most people deem elderly people as senile as if “senile” meant constantly mad at the world. No, sorry it means old, deteriorated. However, all these pissed off grandparents should yell the message loud and clear, the pessimist are outliving the optimist. Maybe it’s the plane crashes, over-enthused suicides, or the genuine smilers.


“Pessimism … is, in brief, playing the sure game. You cannot lose at it; you may gain. It is the only view of life in which you c an never be disappointed. Having reckoned what to do in the worst possible circumstances, when better arise, as they may, life becomes child’s play.”

          –Milena Jesenská

My Pessimistic Optimism


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