Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Reasons to be Cheerful

I'm a casual fan of Ian Dury, a British pub-rocker who put out a few wonderful ditties about 25 years ago. One of my favorites is his somewhat sardonic update on Rogers and Hammerstein, "Reasons to be Cheerful," in which Dury sings (sort of) about things he likes, including claret wine, carrot juice, Steven Biko, singing along to Smokey Robinson, and the solos of John Coltrane. His list may not exactly jibe with yours or mine, but I always have liked the tune because it does remind me that no matter how bad things look, there are reasons to be cheerful. It's probably not coincidental that Dury released the song around the same time that Monty Python featured the song "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life," as sung by the lead character in their movie "The Life of Brian," as he is being crucified.

So instead of worrying about Hezbollah, or snarking about on annoying politicians, today let's consider some of our own "Reasons to be Cheerful." Here's a short list:

Pennant races
Smiling kids' faces
The Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Old chestnuts on the radio
Groucho, Harpo, Chico (Dury mentions them, too)
Steaming cups of coffee
Heath Bar English Toffee
McDonald's Buffalo Chicken Sauce
Mowing the lawn in the early evening
Sunsets over Lake Johanna
Justin Morneau
An Arnie Palmer in a tall glass
Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract

Feel free to add yours.

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