My grandfather used to insist on using The Good China on the grounds that “Who’s better than us?” In other words, if you save the really wonderful things you own until a special enough time comes along to use them, they may never get used. Then you have these lovely items that waste away.
Last week I finally arranged the china cabinet because my Patient Husband finally brought up a lot of boxes from the basement. These had nothing to do with one another, actually, except that we’d both said we’d do these things when we moved to Angelborough nearly two years ago. Until then, the nice things stood haphazard in the china cabinet.
While rearranging them, I came across a lovely mug, white china, ornately wrought with an angel for the handle, and on one side a flowered heart and the other side a fruit tree.
I brought it to my Patient Husband. “I think I could drink out of this.”
At which point, a mariachi band should have exploded in the front door while someone handed me the prize for Mastering The Bleeding Obvious.
But since life isn’t a Monty Python sketch, instead my Patient Husband said, “Probably, but we couldn’t clean it.”
The mug design appears to have been done with a pottery stamp, so the inside is grooved to match the outside. I said, “I couldn’t put this in the dishwasher, no. And I wouldn’t try the microwave. But it would probably hold coffee.”
He said, “You wouldn’t be able to clean it, though.”
I said, “If I don’t drink out of it, then I have a mug I can’t use. If I use it once and it can’t be cleaned, then I have a mug I can’t use. If I try it and it breaks, then I have a mug I can’t use. Where’s the harm?”
This week, I have been drinking out of a beautiful mug. Coffee tastes better in a beautiful mug.
Life is full of things we deem useful but too beautiful to use. Let’s take a dare this weekend: let’s take out that beautiful pen, that beautiful blouse, that pretty serving dish, and use it because beautiful things should be enjoyed. Who’s better than us?