It makes me happy to do something I'm good at. There's a way it feels inside me, like glowing, to be doing something well. Something I've noticed is that I used to feel that if I observed my happiness it might disappear; now I feel like observing it makes it more likely to recur. Hence. It makes me happy to be seen doing something I'm good at -- literally seen or as more often happens, if someone says like "good editing job" or something, appreciates my work even if I'm not doing it.
I think I'm good at my job, I'm good at making the crooked straight and crushing down uneven places. I think I'm good at keeping my word maybe not always but pretty often, when I say I'll do something it takes a lot for me to not do it. I'm a decent storyteller and I'm also usually a pretty good listener though I remember a bit less than I used to. I still remember a lot.
It makes me happy to read a good book, though I have read a lot of bad books and so I don't read as often as I used to or as often as I want to. Similarly I also like watching good television and movies (though movies I watch less, which is weird for a person who used to prioritize time for movies over time for almost anything else). I used to like audiobooks and podcasts but now they just put me to sleep within about 5 minutes; I still remember them fondly though. But a good book or show, the kind where I believe the characters, the story, no matter how improbable; the kind where I inhabit the story as an observer and am carried in the current of it, where I can be pulled up by a perfect sentence without losing the plot, these are a path to happiness.
I like vinegar and salt and anything that tastes better with vinegar and salt. I like dark and bitter chocolate. I like wine outside in the summer with a cigarette and inside in the winter with cheese, either way better with friends.
I feel most myself when I am alone and able to think through something and reach a conclusion that pleases me. I also feel this way when I am with people who help me get through to conclusions that are at least as resonant or more than what I would have reached alone. I like laughing with people much more than laughing alone. I have suffered more than the average supply of fools to reach the people whose love feels real to me and for the most part my love for them increases and deepens in ways that feel important. That brings me a lot of happiness.
I like and have always liked dancing; have often liked singing though most often alone, with the solitary smug pleasure of knowing the words; have liked writing to people I miss and pulling them closer in my mind through that communication.
I have been, in life and of late, so incredibly unbearably sad. But that's not to say that I have not been happy, because I very much have been. I have so much.