5 More Things I Love

5 More Things I Love

It wasn't so long ago that I posted 5 Things I Love. In that blog I shared, ironically enough, 5 things that I love. Well I figured, why stop there? I must love more than just 5 things. It would seem ridiculous to only love 5 thing. So here are 5 more.

1. Microwave Popcorn - Rizzo has popcorn as a snack every night. Literally every night. I'm not talking about the "literally" that people use when they use the term in completely the term in the complete opposite way of its actual meaning. I don't mean literally like "That concert was so great that I literally lost my mind!" or "I literally drank a thousand beers last night". I mean that every night between 8:00 and 9:00 pm Rizzo grabs a pot, fills it with popcorn kernels and oil, pops those bad boys, fills a bowl, grates parmesan cheese over the popcorn then eats it all up.

I won't lie and tell you that I never partake in the popcorn ritual. I do. Often. However, there is something I miss and something I love. That is microwave popcorn.

There is nothing quite as tasty as the chemical-filled, fake butter covered, mounds of heaven that are generated by zapping popcorn kernels with microwaves (yes people, it's called a microwave for a reason). Growing up I remember sitting down with Mom on a snowy day with a bag of microwave popcorn and a Diet Coke to watch a movie. As I got older and went off to college I remember watching on of my best friends (still is) and freshman roommate, Craig, consume not one but two full bags of microwave popcorn while watching the Washington Redskin's game. I'd have a bag or two myself.

These days I stick with the popcorn cooked on the stove top with just a bit of salt. No butter and no odd chemicals. I know it is better for me but that doesn't mean it tastes better. If we are measuring based upon taste alone, I'll pick microwave popcorn over air-popped or oil-popped every day. Twice on Sunday.

2. Leather Bound Notebooks - I think most people you see working will have a pad of legal paper or letter size yellow lined paper to take notes. This is common. I see it everywhere. Some people even slide that pad of paper into a nice portfolio to make it classy. There is nothing wrong with that but that just isn't me. I keep all my notes in a leather bound notebook.

Work notes and personal notes can be found in my leather bound books

Work notes and personal notes can be found in my leather bound books

I have them lining my bookshelf at home after I've filled it up. They contain my notes for work including interviews with clients, review of jobs, lists of stuff to get done and other various odd goings on. They also contain personal stuff; gift ideas for friends and family, blog ideas for future posts, recipes that I haven't just cut out and pasted into another separate notebook, sometimes even a poem or two.

I don't know what got me started writing in these leather bound books. I guess I just wanted to be different then it got to be a habit. Sometimes they are black and sometimes they are red. I especially like the red books when I'm going out to clients because it can be intimidating to clients when I walk in with my red book (I know because they have told me so). Either way, if you are looking to get me a gift then you can never go wrong with a leather bound journal book but make sure it is lined because I can't write straight unless there are lines to follow.

3.. Food & Wine Magazine - I don't take many magazines at my home. For a long time I subscribed to Men's Health but I didn't find the content very helpful or entertaining. I cancelled my subscription but I think they forgot about me because the magazine still comes to my house once a month.

The one magazine to which I do subscribe and actually pay for is Food & Wine. I love the content and the style. One would think that a magazine such as this would be written by pretentious buffoons whose sole purpose in life is to drink a $1,000 glass of wine while eating aged fish eggs off the hand carved plates used by Alexander the Great. I don't find this to be the case at all. I enjoy reading the articles about the up-and-coming restaurants and the new styles of decoration for your bathroom. I use the recipes to cook meals that make me feel like a gourmet chef instead of the schlub that I am. I read the magazine cover to cover and almost always find something worthwhile in its pages.

I like it because the contributors I feel like the contributors to the magazine are people like me. They aren't gourmet chefs but they can cook a chicken or grill a steak without the help of a recipe. They also know they don't know everything and write the articles and recipes in a way that a regular person can understand. Sure, there will be wine recommendations that are $500 a bottle. There are far more wine recommendations that are $20-$25 a bottle because real people don't buy wine at $500 a bottle.

If you are interested in trying a new recipe for dinner go ahead and pick up a Food & Wine. There is always going to be something in there that you can make tonight. Don't believe me? Well you should know that everything I cooked for the Make me a Sandwich!...Valentine's Day Edition came from the pages of Food & Wine and it was delicious.

4. Old Radio Shows - The first time I remember listening to an old-time radio show was during my first visit to Cooperstown, NY. I know that I had heard the famous "Who's on first?" sketch before visiting the Baseball Hall of Fame but I remember my Dad buying a tape (yes kids, a cassette tape) of an entire radio broadcast that featured not only "Who's on First?" but other great bits such as "Slaughter a Feller" and "Hertz U-Drive". We listened to that tape over and over again on the drive back from Cooperstown, NY. I even liked the old 1940s songs from Skinnay Ennis and Marilyn Maxwell. The commercials for Camel cigarettes were even fun in an ironic sort of way. Ever since then I've had an on again, off again relationship with Old Radio Shows.

In my 20s I decided to seek out some other old radio shows and I came across one of the most entertaining old shows you will ever listen to in Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar. The show follows the exploits of Johnny Dollar, a freelance insurance investigator, and tells the stories of the crazy adventures he gets caught up in by relaying his expense report to his home office. I know, I know, it sounds like a terrible concept but give it a listen and I'm sure you'll be entertained.

5. Snow Days - By my estimation there are four feelings towards a snow day. (1) Fall - The air is getting cool and crisp. The leaves are starting to turn from green to lovely shades of red, orange, and yellow. You can see your breath. Winter is coming but hasn't quite arrived. This is when you anticipate the snow day. You remember fondly snow days past and how pretty the snow looked falling to the earth. The romance hits your mind knowing that not a single snowflake is the same. It will be beautiful. You can't wait for the snow day.

(2) Winter - The first snow day has finally arrived. The night before you are constantly checking the weather hoping that it won't be a bust and you will get to see that 6 inches of snow you are promised. When you wake up in the morning the first thing you do is run to the window to look to see if it happened. It did! The roads look beautiful. There is a soft cloud of white covering the world. You call in sick from work. You have to stay home with your family to play.

(3) Spring - The first snow was great. The second one wasn't so bad. That third show over the winter that provided 39 inches of shit covering your driveway was all you could take. The snow isn't white anymore it is brown from the dirt, salt, and chemicals strewn about to try and clear the roadway. You've been locked inside your house for what feels like 17 1/2 years. You need to see green grass. You need to see sunshine. Enough is enough already. If this snow doesn't go away I'm going to kill everyone and everything just to bring this mind numbing cold to an end. Damn you snow! Damn you right to hell!

(4) Summer - It is so hot that I'm pretty sure my sweat is sweating. How is it possible for the humidity to be 115%? This isn't a sports metaphor. The most that is possible is 100% but there is the weatherman telling me that the temperature is 97 degrees but with 115% humidity it feels like 742 degrees. I tried to go running but I couldn't because the soles of my shoes melted to the asphalt. Somehow a cactus has grown in my backyard. Lucifer was staying at the house for a while but he finally left because he couldn't stand the heat. Boy, I can't wait for a snow day!

What are your favorite little things in life? What are the small things that bring you joy? Share in the comment section.


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