The thing is, though, that we need those smily faces. In addition to our laughably small happy cap, we're about to go full-throttle into a war with an empire that should be pretty decent-sized and will likely have a few big empires waiting for us on the other side, which means WW might start to become a concern. My argument for taking Calendar over Monarchy is the fact that, if we want HR to solve the happy problem, we're going to have to build garrisons. These garrisons will be hammers spent on troops that won't be going to the front lines. It's not a bad idea down the road, but since we're about to engage in our first real war here, we're going to want a strong build-up of forces, and we're going to want units to replace them. Calendar gets us at least +3 (Dye, Spices, and Sugar all add IIRC, and we have all three), and with that online plus Silver we'll have a very nice boost in smilies without having to devote any hammers to getting them (assuming we have a nice pool of Workers and Asoka is nice enough to build us more). That said, Construction+Monarchy will likely be useful in this round, especially since (I believe) Construction's on the way to Engineering, which could be huge in this game (cheap Castles + Trebs = very yes). I just disagree with the idea that Calendar is a diversion from our war machine; it doesn't unlock any tech, but taking it solves the happiness problem without having to divert hammers away from war.