Friday, September 24, 2010


It was not the sound I expected to be coming from the sight of an elderly man, slightly bent over and walking with a cane. Whistling. In fact, it apparently caught others by surprise as well, given their reactions as he walked past them.

Whistling seems to be a fading public expression of happiness or contentment. I don’t remember the last time I heard anyone whistle.

And yet, here was this seventy-something seasoned citizen, brightening moments in the days of so many around him.

I found myself remembering songs I used to hear that featured whistling.

“Whistle while you work,” from the Disney movie, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.”

“Sweet Georgia Brown,” the warm up song used by the Harlem Globetrotters.

Bing Crosby in his seasonal hit, “White Christmas.”

The theme song to the 1950s TV show, “The Andy Griffith Show.”

But perhaps my favorite is Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” You can check it out at

As you go through this Friday, maybe you can try a little whistling. I found it surprising refreshing and happy-invoking.

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