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Cornelius News

At this special time of year we are thankful for eye rolls


By Jon Show.  At some point in the last 20 years my family started this tradition where we go around the table and say what we’re thankful for, and it produces the most predictable responses year in and year out.

The Mother of Dragons will say something about the kids and old people. My mom will say roughly the same thing and invoke the name of someone who died in the last year. My son will weave a tapestry that involves cousins he’s never met, his family, and some group of people he read about in school who were historically wronged. My daughter will go off the tracks and end up doing cartwheels in the kitchen, get yelled at by my wife, and refuse to answer the question when asked. My dad will bring up a wartime conflict.

After ten or so minutes it will bounce around the table and end up at me. I think my usual response is some soliloquy along the lines of: “I’m thankful for you people.” Which is followed by an eye roll from my wife, son and mom – in that order.

It’s not my fault, I’m just not very good with words when put on the spot. So here, today, I’d like to share with you – and my family –  the things I’m thankful for.


I love buckets. Buckets might be my favorite possession. I have three at all times. One small bucket is for washing my car. The other two are larger Home Depot buckets. I use one for hauling dirty things like dirt. The other one I use to sit on and carry non-dirty things around. It also works as sawhorses and step stools and all kinds of things. I can’t live my best life without owning multiple buckets.


I have a large Rubbermaid cooler with wheels that has YETI spray painted on the front – I only use it for things like camping. I have a smaller square cooler that I use when we need to take food and drinks to the lake or pool. I have a smaller rectangular cooler that I use when we need drinks but not food. I also have a backpack cooler in case I skateboard to the pool. I recently purchased a 25 gallon marine cooler because the square cooler no longer holds enough food and drink for the four of us. I have not yet thrown away the square cooler because I think an opportunity might present itself that renders the square cooler useful again.

Screw drivers

I used to have more but the children of the neighborhood treat my garage like a lost and found box. I have a great set of all-purpose rubber black ones that used to have nubs on them until they all fell off but they still offer great grip. I have a small yellow one that’s made for electrical work but I use it to turn off the irrigation each winter. I also have a set of tiny screwdrivers in case I ever start an eyeglass repair shop? Who knows. I just know I’m going to need them at some point.

Hotel towels

I’m self-employed so I stay in hotels that someone would politely describe as not fancy. As Future Man says, “Mom stays at hotels that have robes and slippers, and dad stays at hotels that have free breakfast.” This summer I took a lacrosse trip with Future Man and stayed at a Hampton Inn, which has the best towels on EARTH. Thin? Yup. Chalk white? Of course. Rough enough to provide a full body exfoliation every morning when you shower? Most definitely. There is nothing. Better. Than a scratchy towel. I stole three.

Ikea dish towels

My wife buys kitchen towels for their designs. I buy kitchen towels for their ability to, you know, wipe things up. Ikea dish towels cost $1 each so if they get stained, who cares? Throw them away. I don’t know how you can argue against a reusable disposable product. Speaking of …

Disposable Food Containers

The Mother of Dragons buys glass containers so when I leave something in one of them for two weeks I have to walk to the woods to dump it out and then return to our home to disinfect a container that smells like someone’s hamster died inside of it. I buy disposable containers. You know what happens when I find leftovers inside a disposable container in the back of the fridge that’s been there for a week? A month? Who cares? I throw it in the trash. Problem solved.

Mason Jars

I have at least six and use them for so many things I don’t even know where to start, so I’ll give you my favorite. On kids’ sports days I’ll make a pot of iced tea in one large jar. I pour half the tea in a large Ozark (Wal-Mart Yeti) and fill the rest with ice and lemonade, and then I fill up the rest of the tea jar with lemonade and take both to the fields. You can never have too much Arnold Palmer. I’m pretty sure other parents think I’m drinking moonshine.

There are just so many things to be thankful for this holiday season. Winter hats (bald heads aren’t meant for sub-50 temps); lady socks (or whatever you call those no show socks); and my food dehydrator (jerky is so yummy).

So family, when it comes my turn at the table on Thanksgiving to tell you what I’m thankful for, this is it. This is what gets me out of bed every morning and makes my world turn.

And you people. I’m thankful for you people, too.

Jon Show lives in Robbins Park with his wife, who he calls “The Mother of Dragons.” Their 10-year-old son is “Future Man” and their 7-year-old daughter is “The Blonde Bomber.” Their dog is actually named Lightning.