Smith Says

  • Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I take a lot of things for granted. That’s because A) I get caught up in the demolition derby that is life, which gets my nerves twanging like a cheap banjo, and B) I plain forget how blessed I am. A good life seems normal if you live it long enough.
But today, as Thanksgiving looms on the morrow, I’m taking time out from staring helplessly at the oven while eyeing the Chardonnay. I’m going to pause and give thanks for things I take for granted.
I’m thankful for…
The mahi-mahi burgers I discovered at Costco. I love me some mahi-mahi.
Fabric stores. I can’t sew or even pin a pattern, but I love to feel bolts of silk, velvet and chintz. And the tassels! Yes, Lord!
Knockout roses.
The fact that I can read any newspaper, watch any newscast, go to any church, criticize any leader, vote in any election and not have to work about hearing jackboots in the night. In a word, freedom.
Cashews, candied walnuts and spiced pecans. I love nuts, even if they go straight to my thighs.
Air conditioning.
Creamy bubble bath that makes my skin feel like skin, versus alligator hide.
Cookbooks. Internet sites are great, but nothing replaces reading a recipe for jellied artichoke hearts in a stained 1958 cookbook called “How to Feed Your Man.”
 “House, MD” and anything on the History Channel.
Confession and the absolution of sin. Thank God, He doesn’t require perfection.
Our Coasties, Airmen, Soldiers, Marines and Sailors.
My brothers and sister. We look and act nothing alike, but what are you gonna do?
My wedding band and what it means.
Contact lenses.
A stylist who actually knows how to beat my hair into submission.
My body, which gets me where I want to go and pretty much does everything I ask it to.
The mules and donkeys that stare at me, bug-eyed, during my rural runs. Apparently I’m their daily entertainment, like reality TV.
My father.
“Mad About You” re-runs.
Our odd little dog.
River friends.
A mother who never let me leave the house with chipped nail polish or a bad attitude.
Satellite radio. Yes, I am spoiled.
Soft, over-sized bath towels.
Good running shoes.
Swiffer mops, the better to sweep up the drifts of white dog hair that magically reappear in every corner of our home, every day.
Feather pillows.
Starched shirts.
Maple syrup, which costs about as much as gold these days. (I grew up eating hot buttered pancakes drenched in cold syrup; my mother always kept syrup in the fridge, so that’s how I eat pancakes today. Unfortunately, the people at IHOP think I’m crazy.)
The works of Truman Capote, Flannery O’Connor, Eudora Welty and Carson McCullers. I would include Harper Lee, but I’m still miffed about the never-another-book thing.
Winter gloves. My favorite pair cost $2 at Family Dollar.
Screened porches.
Clearasil and anti-wrinkle cream. Yes, I use both. And the universe laughs.
Invitations in the mail.
Fountain pens.
Online celebrity gossip sites. I’m so shallow.
Air freshener that smells like sheets on a clothesline.
Farmers’ markets.
Dry shampoo, a busy woman’s best friend.
Cell phones. I text, I talk, I surf, I snap pics… I’m addicted.
My husband, who knows why.
Julie R. Smith, who’s also thankful for fried okra, can be reached at widdleswife@aol.com.


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