Chesapeake Bay's Independent Newspaper ~ Since 1993
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Volume XVII, Issue 48 ~ November 26 - December 2, 2009

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My Reasons for Thanks

Mom and Dad still rank, but for this 20-something, sweat pants trump stuffed animals

by Ariel Martinez Brumbaugh

When I was in pre-school I sat in a circle with my other classmates and passed around a bowl, dropping corn kernels inside and sharing what I was thankful for. I said things like my friends, my family, my stuffed animals, all of which I am still thankful for. But now, 20 years later, I thought I’d give it another try.

1. I am thankful for sweatpants. It is the season for sweatpants, and anyone who has ever been very drunk knows that the next day nothing cures a hangover like a pair of baggy sweatpants. The best kinds are big enough that you never worry about your ankles getting cold, or your seat bunching up. Big pockets are key; they need to be able to hold at least your cell phone and the TV remote control.

2. The economy is crap. I know a lot of people have a lot to complain about, but I just think we should look at the bright side. I don’t have a “real” job but I’m not going to let it get me down. The economy is a great excuse to not feel guilty about sitting around all day and watching Law and Order re-runs. P.S. I swear mom, I’m still looking for a job.

3. Balloon Boy and his parents. What would we do without crazy outlanders to keep us entertained? Sure, it might have been irresponsible and a huge waste of everyone’s time and money, but let’s be thankful that the kid didn’t actually fall from a balloon. Plus we all know there is nothing better than a story where the bad guy gets what’s coming to him. Now we can sit back and watch the parents go to jail.

4. While we’re on the subject of things everyone likes, I’d like to give thanks to the egg. For a couple bucks you can get 12 at the store, and I’ve never seen a more versatile food. Hard-boiled, soft-boiled, poached, sunny side up, scrambled, fried, over easy, over medium, over hard, deviled eggs, eggs Benedict, eggs Florentine, French omelets, regular omelets, breakfast burritos, quiche, egg sandwiches — not to mention all the desserts you can make with eggs. It doesn’t matter to me which came first, the egg is by far superior.

5. The Duggar Family (18 kids and counting), for being a really great form of birth control.

6. Bookstores. Not the really massive ones that sell books as well as CDs, DVDs, board games, calendars, greeting cards and have a built-in-coffee shop. (Apparently somebody thinks that avid readers are the type of people who like to sit around and drink coffee; somebody should consider a built-in bar.) I really love the hole-in-the-wall independent bookstores, where you can sit for hours in the poetry section and dream away an afternoon. Forget the Kindle; half the fun is in turning the next dusty page.

7. Computers, because how big a pain would it have been to write this on a typewriter? Thankfully, I’ll never know.

8. My family, for taking me out to lunch when there’s nothing to eat in my fridge. For letting me leave my laundry at their house when I can’t stay to change it from the washer to dryer. For lending me money and letting me pay it back very, very slowly. Mostly, for not minding when I include them in my stories.