50 Things

I blew off the last two hours of work today, not because I couldn’t have found more things to do – there are always more things to do – but because by noon, both Jeremy and I had already had a day that felt a month long. By one I was fractured, and fractious, and just needed to be AWAY.

I came home, and spent about an hour just singing along with songs from Napster cranked up to the point where, if the neighbors hadn’t all been at work, like sensible, normal people generally are at three in the afternoon, they surely would have complained. Well, perhaps not quite that loud. But still, it was freeing, cathartic, to get lost in music, to remember the way resonance feels in my head, in my body. I think in melodies and lyrics, more than in text or images, and I’ve been boxing that part of myself this past month or so.

To further combat the severe Mondayness that permeated my life today (and involved a failure to visit Starbucks for my usual morning macchiato, among other things) I’ve decided to list fifty things that make me smile, in no particular order.

1) Rainy days, especially when I can hang out at home, and write.
2) The beach, in winter, or right after a large storm.
3) The beach, any other time of year.
4) Puddles, especially when no one’s watching and I can splash like the inner seven-year-old I still harbor within myself.
5) Cheesy musicals, especially the old Mickey Rooney/Judy Garland “Hey let’s put on a show” kind.
6) Horse racing.
7) Figure skating.
8) Sunflowers, and irises, and flowers in general.
9) Impressionistic art.
10) Good novels, and quiet time to read.
11) Fuzzy.
12) Zorro, especially when he play bows.
13) Cleo, especially when she’s wrinkly and tired.
14) Swimming.
15) Strong coffee.
16) Dark chocolate.
17) The smell of Clinique make-up – it’s my mother’s smell.
18) Sunshine on the wood floor of my office.
19) The smell of freshly-turned earth.
20) Stargazing.
21) Swimming.
22) Tap-dancing.
23) Singing.
24) Random *snugs* from friends I generally only see online.
25) Random hugs from friends I generally see offline.
26) Long phone calls with my aunt in Connecticut.
27) Handwritten letters.
28) Postcards, especially from places I’ve never been.
29) Smart dialogue in television shows.
30) Non-traditional casting.
31) Micro-fine roller-ball pens.
32) Crayola crayons.
33) The fortunes inside Perugina Baci chocolates.
34) Grumbacher oil pastels (the scent as well as the colors).
35) Brand-new spiral notebooks, college ruled.
36) Soft white cotton ankle socks on freshly lotioned feet.
37) Really good drawing paper, even though I can’t draw.
38) The cello.
39) Travel.
40) Coming home after a trip.
41) The moment in the middle of a hot summer night, when the heat breaks, and cool air drifts in.
42) Lightning.
43) Lady bugs.
44) Music, in general.
45) Pasta.
46) Grilled cheeseburgers.
47) Bubblebaths.
48) Clean sheets.
49) The smell of clothing dried on a line, outside.
50) Love – in pretty much any form.

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 50 Things by Melissa Bartell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.