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Pop Culture

'Star Wars' creator George Lucas explains the secret to happiness

"It's a very American thing."

george lucas, what is happiness, star wars

'Star Wars' and 'Indiana Jones' creator George Lucas.

George Lucas is known for creating two of the most popular film franchises of all time, “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones.” Both sagas are great fantasy and adventure films that were elevated by powerful ideas taken from anthropology, religion and mythology.

Lucas has spent a lifetime thinking deeply about the human condition and weaving those themes into his art. So when he was asked to give a speech at the Academy of Achievement in 2013 about his road to success, his views on happiness were incredibly thoughtful.


They also sound a lot like the ideas that he’s shared in his films.

“Happiness is pleasure and happiness is joy,” he begins. “It can be either one, you add them up and it can be the uber category of happiness. Pleasure is short-lived. It lasts an hour, it lasts a minute, it lasts a month. And it peaks and it goes down. It peaks very high. But the next time you want to get that same peak you have to do it twice as much.”

In the video below he explains why the pursuit of pleasure leads us to only crave more while focusing on joy provides an inexhaustible well of happiness.

Lucas shared a similar observation with the writing staff of “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” and he related the same principle to the Force.

“Only way to overcome the dark side is through discipline,” he said. “The dark side is pleasure, biological and temporary and easy to achieve. The light side is joy, everlasting, and difficult to achieve. A great challenge. Must overcome laziness, give up quick pleasures, and overcome fear which leads to hate.”

Joy

Sorry, Labradors. After 31 years, America has a new favorite dog.

The American Kennel Club has crowned a new favorite.

via Pixabay

A sad-looking Labrador Retriever

The sweet-faced, loveable Labrador Retriever is no longer America’s favorite dog breed. The breed best known for having a heart of gold has been replaced by the smaller, more urban-friendly French Bulldog.

According to the American Kennel Club, for the past 31 years, the Labrador Retriever was America’s favorite dog, but it was eclipsed in 2022 by the Frenchie. The rankings are based on nearly 716,500 dogs newly registered in 2022, of which about 1 in 7 were Frenchies. Around 108,000 French Bulldogs were recorded in the U.S. in 2022, surpassing Labrador Retrievers by over 21,000.

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via Google and Freepik

Google's new personal information removal submission page.

In the internet era, the idea of personal privacy is all but a myth. With a few keystrokes just about anyone can get your home address, phone number, email, age and the names of your family members. The fact that this information is readily available puts us all in the dangerous position of being the victim of fraud, stalking and violence.

What makes the situation even worse is that our information was put online without any of our consent.

The good news is that Google just made a big change that gives us all a little more control over our personal information. On April 27, the company announced it will allow anyone to request removals of their personal information from its Search feature.

“Open access to information is a key goal of Search, but so is empowering people with the tools they need to protect themselves and keep their sensitive, personally identifiable information private. That’s why we’re updating our policies to help people take more control of their online presence in Search,” Michelle Chang, Google’s Global Policy Lead for Search, announced on the company’s blog.

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Joy

An 8-year-old snuck his handwritten book onto a library shelf. Now it has a 56-person waiting list.

Dillon Helbig's 81-page graphic novel— written by "Dillon His Self"—captured the hearts of his local librarians and their patrons.

Dillon Helbig's 81-page graphic novel captured the hearts of his local librarians.

Writing a book is no easy task, even for adult professional writers. Many would-be authors dream of a day when their work can be found on library shelves, unsure if it will ever come.

But for 8-year-old Dillon Helbig, that day has already arrived—in truly unconventional fashion—thanks to his own determination to make it happen.

Dillon wrote his 81-page graphic novel, "The Adventures of Dillon Helbig's Crismis" (written by "Dillon His Self") in a hardcover journal with colored pencils over the course of a few days. He even put a label on the back of the book that reads "Made in Idho" [sic] and put an illustrated spine label on it as well. Then, without telling anyone, he brought it to his local library in Boise, Idaho, and slipped it in among the books in the children's section.

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Becca Moore and Raul Torres having margaritas.

Becca Moore is a popular TikToker with over 800,000 followers who's known for her funny, laid-back takes on dating. Like any influencer-type she was at the Coachella music and arts festival in Indio, California recently. While she was at Coachella, she was robbed of her phone, rental car keys and wallet.

“I went to Coachella this weekend and I thought this guy was kinda hitting on me but then he just robbed me,” Becca says at the beginning of her three-minute TikTok video with over 3 million views. After the festival, she was left with no ride, money, or means to get in contact with friends and family. She was stranded in the desert.

Becca’s friend’s hotel called her an Uber so she could get to a local store to buy a new phone. The driver she was incredibly lucky to be connected with was a lot more than a guy with a car in a time of need, he was a guardian angel named Raul Torres from Fresno, California, six hours north of Indio.

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Joy

44 years ago he became her protector after a terrible act. Today, they've been reunited in love.

Betsy and Irv are finally getting the happy ending they deserve. Together.

It’s pretty safe to say that everyone loves a good love story.

There’s a whole genre of music and movies dedicated to the idea of someone being swept off of their feet after circumstances tried to keep them from their true love. Romance novels could single handedly keep public libraries and bookstores afloat. Everyone loves "love" and the story of Betsy and Irv just takes the cake. Betsy Sailor attended Penn State University as a business major, which was almost unheard of in 1978 and Irv Pankey attended the university while playing football. The pair’s paths never crossed, until an unfortunate incident bonded the two forever.

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@SopheAlice/TikTok

Best way to travel, really.

As they say, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey.”

This old adage was brought to life in a whole new way after two friends who thought they booked tickets to Budapest, Hungary, instead found themselves heading to Bucharest, Romania.

Just a minor 500-mile difference, but who’s counting?

TikToker @SophAlice posted a video of the pair realizing their mix-up, which went viral and set them off on an impromptu adventure based entirely on the comments they received.
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