5.21.2022 – appreciative

appreciative
of the good things in life, kind,
has intelligence

If it’s Saturday (and for me it is) and if someone is reading this (and they must be to read this) and they have read these posts in the past (which they might have) it will not come as a surprise that today’s haiku is based on the weekly feature in the Guardian titled, Blind Date.”

Two people agree to meet in a London Restaurant and answer questions about the evening.

Often it is just the restaurant and its menu that brings out the comments in my fingers as they type on the keyboard and the restaurant today, Ottolenghi Spitalfield, could be a part of a Saturday morning creative process and but another day.

That being said, I find it hard to accept that I could call my wife and say, “Made reservations at Ottolenghi Spitalfield’s” and she would not have reservations of her own.

(UPDATE – further research shows that the place was Ottolengi’s IN Spitalfield but I am not sure that helps)

Also, I have to mention that a menu that list’s a Butter bean mash, burnt lemon and coriander salsa, pine nuts, Aleppo chilli for £11 or Lamb kebab, tzatziki and ladopita for £17 deserves some further attention, but I digress.

In the Blind Date today, the participants where asked the question, Best thing about …?

One of today’s blind dater’s responded: He seems kind, appreciative of the good things in life and has emotional as well as practical intelligence.

Which, I would think, anyone would be happy to have as someone’s first impression of themselves.

But it got me to thinking.

What are the good things in life?

I got to making a list of things.

I was smart enough in making my list that these ‘good things in life’ are of course those things that are free or cheap.

Right?

I mean I started my list with sunshine.

Maybe you have had to grow up in West Michigan, notably the 2nd most overcast piece of real estate in the Western Hemisphere, after the Pacific Northwest and Seattle, to understand how good a sunny day can make you feel.

Then I went the other way and made a list of the good things that aren’t free.

Not wanting to brag, by my wife and I can pick out the best bottle of wine available at the nearby gas station with our eyes closed.

Well, maybe not closed, as we do have to make sure that it is the cheapest.

This has got a little more complicated since the local gas station started keeping the Cabernet and the Merlot in the cooler for our conveince.

As a tip, the $6 gas station bottle is far superior to the $4 Kroger bottle.

(BTW, my latest book, “After the Third Sip, It All Tastes the Same” is number 3 in Germany this week)

But then I kicked myself and said, gee whiz stupid, get with the program and come up with the good things of life.

Then I looked at the phrase again, appreciative of the good things in life.

It came to me that there is no definitive list of ‘the good things.’

Everyone’s list is different.

It is the appreciative part that is the key.

Much like how Alice Walker wrote in the Color Purple, “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.”

I am reminded of Carl Sandburg’s poem, Happiness:

I ASKED the professors who teach the meaning of life to tell
me what is happiness.
And I went to famous executives who boss the work of
thousands of men.
They all shook their heads and gave me a smile as though
I was trying to fool with them
And then one Sunday afternoon I wandered out along
the Desplaines river
And I saw a crowd of Hungarians under the trees with
their women and children and a keg of beer and an
accordion.

There are a lot of people in this world.

God put a lot of good things in this world.

I hope I can appreciate it.

Or as the wonderful Nora York sang, Thank you for my breath, my breathing.

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