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Alix and Lulu, your Invisibilia hosts. Photo courtesy of NPR.

Alix and Lulu, your Invisibilia hosts. Photo courtesy of NPR.

I’m starting a weekly series called “What’s Making Me Happy.” Look for it on Fridays. Sorry, NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour, if you think I’m ripping you off! Think of it as a tribute to the last segment you always have on the show 🙂 This is my way to publicly declare what I’m thankful for and give a shout-out to deserving people and things.

Without further ado…

Invisibilia. I love podcasts. When I got my first mp3 player years ago, I filled it with podcasts. I have very little music on my iPod. On my runs, I’d rather listen to a good story. Right now, I’m loving the Invisibilia podcast. It’s new, but immensely popular. A few months ago everyone was talking about Serial. Invisibilia has actually overtaken Serial on the iTunes charts, and it’s only been around since January. The podcast delves into things that surround us but that we cannot see. It’s a little mysterious and a lot compelling.

Sugar. The band, not the food (that’s a whole other story. I used to be a sugar addict but now I watch my intake and I’m so happy with my body and physical activity as a result). Anyway, I was into Sugar about 20 years ago and forgot all about them until I resurrected the “Copper Blue” CD. I put a couple of songs on my iPod (I do occasionally need a musical boost during runs). On the treadmill a few days ago at the Y, I set my playlist to shuffle and was so energized by the Sugar songs that came on. I fell in love all over again. Enjoy:

Modern medicine.
I was diagnosed with shingles last week. Compared to stories I’ve heard from other people, I think had a relatively mild case. I was able to manage the pain with regular doses of ibuprofen. My doctor put me on an anti-viral, and within 48 hours I felt so much better. When I get sick and take prescription medicine, I often think about how people years ago handled these illnesses. What if I was Laura Ingalls Wilder and I got shingles? I guess they go away on their own, but I couldn’t imagine going through weeks and weeks of pain. I am so grateful for pharmaceuticals that can quickly knock out illness.

I lived on ibuprofen last week. It did the trick! Photo by author.

I lived on ibuprofen last week. It did the trick! Photo by author.

Just a quick note about shingles: Mine started with a super itchy inner ear. Then a couple of days later I got what I thought was a big zit by my eyebrow. But if it was a zit, it was the most painful zit ever! So if that happens to you, think about the possibility of shingles. I thought it was a zit for three days before I started to look for other reasons for the pain.

What are you grateful for this week? Have you been listening to Invisibilia? Sugar? Have you been taking ibuprofen? LOL!