Mrs. Smith: my SU, my LP, the LOMY

An article about weddings caught my eye this morning in the Denver Post. (I would link to it but it doesn’t seem to be online yet.) That a story about weddings would catch my eye is unusual and I’m not sure why this one did. Maybe because we received a “save the date” note by snail mail yesterday about our niece’s November wedding in California, or that a wedding this summer in New Jersey won’t be happening because of coronavirus, or that our own 41st wedding anniversary is a few days from now.

The LOMY on top of Mt. Elbert, Colorado.

When I say “our,” I’m referring to me and Mrs. Smith, which brings me to the point. The article mentioned the disfavor “Mrs.” has taken on among many women.That’s not a new development, but it occurred to me some might not appreciate my referring to Mrs. Smith as Mrs. Smith.

I am not overly concerned about this because I readily acknowledge that her identity is uniquely her own and in no way dependent on me. She chose to change her last name to mine only after our son was born and the medical community in eastern Iowa proved to be too easily confused to deal with the situation.

Probably overthinking any risk to her privacy – and hoping to avoid causing her unnecessary embarrassment at being associated with yours truly – I later began referring to her as Mrs. Smith in blog posts as a way to avoid using her first name.

In any event, now that this has come to my attention, I will do my best to refer to my spousal unit not as Mrs. Smith but as either my spousal unit (SU), my Life Partner (LP), or the Love of My Life (LOMY).

My LP, by the way, has a perfectly lovely first name.

The New Desiderata (2003)

Pulled from the archives…


With apologies to Max Ehrmann
Desideratum = something desired as essential. – Merriam-Webster

Go noisily among the silent and apathetic and remember what virtue there may be in saying what you think. Suffer not the fools of the earth but be on good terms with all others. – Think carefully before you speak, but say your truth plainly and loudly enough for all to hear. – Yes, listen even to the dull and ignorant, especially those who became so through no fault of their own. The purposely ignorant deserve nothing more than your scorn; they have their stories, too, but none that are worth knowing. – Avoid telemarketers, insurance salesmen and yammering pundits; they are vexations to the spirit. – Compare yourself with others only to see how you can grow as a human being; find someone to be like who is worth emulating.

Sunday Goose, Lake McIntosh, Longs Peak, Colorado

For your successes, give due credit to your maker and your parents and your teachers; your failures and mistakes are your own. Forgive yourself and go on. – If you can, devote yourself to meaningful work that you enjoy, but remember that any honest labor is worthwhile if it contributes to the well-being of your family. – Steal from no one; if you want something, be willing to pay for it. – Entertain no silly ideas about the inherent honesty and goodness of the people; many have high ideals, but many hold to no universal truths other than their own consciences and desires. – Be true to your school.

Trust those you love; with others, verify. – Give no one reason to doubt your word or sincerity. In the face of cynicism and reality that is only virtual, your word is still your bond and your good name all you can take with you. – Unless misfortune or disease strikes you down, you will get old; deal with it. – Few things are as bad as you imagine they will be. Think of all who have taken your path before; they managed somehow.

Being here is a gift you have been given and there are strings attached: You are here to help the universe unfold, and others are counting on you. – Live a good life, and do nothing that would displease your mother. – It really can be a beautiful world if you treat it that way. Don’t worry. Be happy.


Found on a PC in East Central Iowa, circa 2003.

© B.J. Smith

Humility is the word

I thought about my place in the world and in the universe during some quiet time this morning. My place is very small, as is yours. Humility is the word that comes to mind. It is good to remember that.

Pixabay image

Expecting things to last forever

When I was a boy, I expected things to last forever.

Then I learned that toys and families break, that friends move away and new friends are made, that loves and loved ones are lost and found. That joy and sorrow coexist and that nothing stays the same.

Transient, too, are the wonders of the world, whether shaped by wind and water or formed by our own hands. We mourn their destruction or decay, their ultimate absence from our world.

Then we build again or leave a space to remember, with tears and a smile, what we once had.

Pixabay image

I am a child with silver hair

My first documented arrival on the planet that I now share with you was in the United States of America a little more than three-score Earth years ago. In the grand, cosmic scheme, I am but a child, a baby of the boom.

The third of six children, the son a now long-dead alcoholic physician whom I rarely acknowledge and a smart, loving, hard-working mother who was single for far too long before she died, I am among the luckiest of men. I am loved by and tolerated by and married to a wonderful woman who keeps me alive.

And still I am but a child as I sit here wondering why my foot hurts and my knee aches so much for someone so young.

Though still a child in these crying, drying eyes, I have outlived a sister, and cousins and friends, and many, many faithful dogs, and some cats that I never understood.

My hair turned white somehow, somewhere along this lucky streak of mine.

My love calls it silver. I am a child with silver hair.