More about this play, Every Brilliant Thing, that I saw yesterday. it involved audience participation as individuals were invited to take on specific roles to help the character carry on her story. Maybe the fact that the people were theatre-goers helped them to be temporary actors in the play they were called on to tell. Each of them was marvellous - and funny - and each one embellished the assigned role with humour and detail. It was a delightful afternoon and it continued. Post-It Notes and felt pens were available in the lobby after the show and people used them to write their own brilliant thing. The walls were studded with happy notes.

The premiss of the play, that a thought of a “brilliant thing”might stave off depression and/or suicide, led to a vast collection of such things. It made me think of Neil Pasricha’s books on awesome. He is a Canadian blogger of East Indian descent, who began a daiily blog called 1000 Awesome Things on June 20, 2008. His story is that he was depressed by his divorce and by a close friend’s suicide so he began to look for positive things.

“Sometimes it's easy to forget the things that make us smile. Sometimes it's tempting to feel the world is falling apart. But awesome things are all around us:

  • Popping bubble wrap

  • The smell of rain on a hot sidewalk”

That’s the pitch on Amazon for his first book The Book of Awesome (2011) Other Awesome books followed (Even More; Holiday; and Everywhere, 2011, 21, and 2015, plus daily calendars for 2012,2013, 2014, and 2015. Need I say that he was/is an international best-seller? Happiness books succeeded the Awesome books. He posted his last Awesome blog on April 19, 2012.

You’re all too young to remember a song by Johnny Mercer in 1944 (music by Harold Arlen) that was on the Hit Parade when I was a teen-ager. “Accentuate the positive”, (“Eliminate the negative”), were the imperatives for a good life.

Still valid today, and necessary.