Giving gratitude, with tongue in cheek

I don't need to look far to find a bumper crop of blessings this Thanksgiving. Here are 30 reasons to give thanks - one for each day:

1. Hairdressers don't go on strike.

2. Halloween candy doesn't get really stale until Easter.

3.Dogs can't talk. I don't need another family member tying up the phone or yelling out a pizza preference.

4. No one really knows if you don't forward the schmaltzy e-message to "five people you love."

5. Goodwill employees keep a poker face when I deposit my goods, such as the fringed lavender blouse that made me look like an animated lampshade.

6. If I procrastinate cleaning my closet long enough, those dreary ankle- swaddling skirts will cycle back into style.

7. People grow desensitized to house flaws, such as missing drawer pulls and woodwork that needs painting. I know from experience that if you live long enough in a Victorian hovel with skimpy kitchen counter space, it eventually seems normal to set the brownie pan on the floor.

8. Humans have only one stomach, not four, like cows.

9. Buyer's remorse is easily cured ... by buying something else.

10. Free counseling is available simply by driving down the road. Magnetic signs in front of churches dole out such wisdom as: "Try to be the person your dog thinks you are."

11. No sin tax yet on ice cream.

12. Mothers automatically grow eyes in the back of their heads and don't even need to turn around to know when a kid is mouthing a nasty word or siphoning a cupcake five minutes before dinner.

13. Catsup covers a variety of culinary disasters when the diner is under age 10.

14. The human gestation period is only nine months, not 20 like the elephant's.

15. Silly purchases, such as the flowing white blouse that made me look like a clipper ship, are someone else's treasures at my rummage.

16. Triple Coupon Day at the supermarket lets me add another can of tomato paste for mere pennies to the towers of tomato paste cans rusting in the cabinet.

17. Mothers automatically develop voices that could win a hog-calling contest.

18. Growing older means that I can wear ski pants in July and be considered eccentric, not wacko.

19. Multitasking makes it possible to talk on the phone, punch the microwave with my toes, watch "The Price is Right," and peel hard-boiled eggs all at once.

20. Unattended philodendrons will hang on for months.

21. Several hundred calories can be burned by shoving an unused treadmill from bedroom to garage and back again as willpower waxes and wanes.

22. Dressing rooms have curtains or doors.

23. Drive-up windows let me do my banking, dining, library, and movie returns without troubling with makeup.

24. No sin tax yet on chocolate.

25. Motherhood is the perfect excuse for everything - fatigue, crotchety personality, droopy eyes, debt, losing miserably at Monopoly. (You have to let the little one win, of course, to build his self-esteem.)

26. Being disorganized and not keeping a baby book has its advantages. You have to rely on your own memory. Of course, my daughter knew her ABC's at 6 months and was potty-trained by 9 months.

27. Truck stops are open Christmas Day for those really last-minute shoppers.

28. Knowing how to cook is not a prerequisite for entering a recipe contest.

29. Most employers don't require their employees to walk on hot coals to bond.

30. As bad as it seems, it can be worse. Pilgrims didn't have microwave ovens.

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