52 ODES OF JOY: THE F-WORDS

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F-WORDS are not used frequently enough. At least that’s true for some F-WORDS. There are so many FABU F-WORDS, I’ve FINAGLED them into two fragments, 25 in this installment and 25 MORE F-WORDS in the next.

To fortify your familiarity with the four basic facets of “The S.U.N.S. (Smile-Making, Uniting, Neighboring, Spellbinding) Joyous Aging System,” I’m FANCYING this as the first half of 50, FANTABULOUS faves, especially for friends and family who are 50-plus.

THE F-WORDS (SMILE-MAKING)

  1. FOOTLOOSE & FANCY FREE “Now ya gotta cut loose, footloose; kick off your Sunday shoes. Please, Louise, pull me off of my knees. Jack, get back, come on before we crack. Lose your blues, everybody cut footloose.” (“Footloose,” lyrics by Kenny Loggins for title song of 1984 film)
  2. FANFARES Here’s a musical fab five: “Fanfare for the Common Man” (Aaron Copeland), “Sinfonies de Fanfares” (Mouret—you’ll recognize this 18th century work from the BBC’s 20th century “Masterpiece Theatre”), “Sinfonietta” (Janacek), “Triumphal March” from “Aida” (Verdi) and “Short Ride in a Fast Machine” (John Adams). All flabbergastingly FREE on YouTube.
  3. FRESH “I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.”—J.B. Priestley
  4. FASHIONISTA “Style is something each of us already has, all we need to do is find it.”—Diane von Furstenberg, fashion designer
  5. FLATTER “In the best, the friendliest and simplest relations, flattery or praise is necessary, just as grease is necessary to keep wheels turning.”—Leo Tolstoy

FIVE FLATTERING COMPLIMENTS TO TRY TODAY:

– “I pretty much only feel comfortable when I’m with you. You’re like the sweatpants of my life.”

– “It’s too bad you can’t see yourself as I do because you’d smile and keep looking.”

– “My favorite color is whatever you are wearing.”

– “Our time together is like a nap; it’s delightful but it just doesn’t last long enough.”

– “The hardest part about being your friend is pretending that I like my other friends as much as I like you.”

  • FLOWERS “Buy yourself flowers, simply because flowers are beautiful and you deserve beauty in your life.”—Karen Salmanshohn
  • FABALICIOUS FLAVORS “Two out of three U.S. consumers love to discover new flavors while the same proportion say that going out to dinner inspires their home cooking,” according to a survey by Innova Market Insights, The Netherlands. Additionally, globalization has sparked our curiosity to explore new food and beverages with research indicating three in ten U.S. diners love to discover flavors of other cultures.
  • FAH SHIZZLE MY NIZZLE!! Expressing hyper-positivity communicates joy to others and to your brain—try these today: Over the moon! On top of the world! I’m a Happy Camper! Grinnin’ like a mule eatin’ briars! This one from country comedy legend, Minnie Pearl, “Howdee! I’m jez so proud to be here!”
  • FITNESS Reflect back to the chapter on “SILLYASS FITNESS,” ways to take the solemness out of exercise and make it about FUN moves like “Go you Chicken Fat go!,” “Walking as Natural Wellbutrin,” and doing some “Diddly Squats.”
  • FUNFAIR State fairs began as farmers trade shows in the 1800s, then carnival rides and arcade games were added; every year “Reader’s Digest” magazine publishes an update for fun-seekers in “The Best Fair in All 50 States”
  • FACE-FANCY is a term for adding a mustache or beard that might promise to make your face look a hair fancier. The “Movember Movement” charity out of East Melbourne, Australia promotes the month of November as “Movember” to raise awareness and funds for men’s health matters such as prostate and testicular cancers.

THE F-WORDS (UNITING)

  1. FUN is FUNdamental. Just this morning, I was reading the latest issue of “Psychotherapy Networker” magazine (May/June 2022) which was totally dedicated to adding FUN to a master therapist’s toolkit as a way of UNITING counselor and client. As writers Martha Straus and Kevin McKenzie state, “Shared laughter is an attachment language. Though therapists usually engage more knowingly with tears, the exchange of brighter affect is another kind of invitation to the dance of intimacy.”
  2. FANDANGO, a lively Spanish dance for two people, is typically accompanied by castanets and/or tambourine. YouTube “Luigi Boccherini Fandango” and get your Morticia and Gomez Adams FANDANGO on!
  3. FORGIVENESS “There is no love without forgiveness, and there is no forgiveness without love.”—Bryant H. McGill
  4. FATHERLY means “befitting a compassionate father,” and FATHERLY.com is the largest online advice platform for those aspiring to be FATHERLY.
  5. FORTUNE TELLER For many years, I’ve gone to a fortune teller religiously (possibly not the right word) at some point between Christmas Day and January 1, so I can share predictions at New Year’s Eve parties. Have you never had your Tarot cards or your palm read? What have you got to lose? Well, maybe $30 or so.
  6. FAUNA “Our perfect companions rarely have fewer than four feet.”—Colette
  7. FELICITY is a synonym for intense happiness. “There is more felicity on the far side of baldness than young men can possibly imagine.”—Logan Pearsall Smith
  8. FRISKY “Your cells are as depressed as you are, and your cells are as happy and frisky as you are.”—Abraham-Hicks, husband-and-wife writing duo
  9. FRANKNESS “Honesty and frankness makes you vulnerable. Be honest and frank, anyway.”—Mother Teresa
  10. FAMILIAL “The capacity for friendship is God’s way of apologizing for our families.”—Jay McInerney
  11. FRATERNIZE, to come together as friends, is so essential for happiness and contentment that we find many ways to describe the pleasure, including chum, consort, hang out with, hobnob, pal around, run with, ally, bond, collaborate, connect, couple-up, socialize, link, team, rub elbows, keep company—and a personal fave—mingle.
  12. FICTIONALIZE “Books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life.”—Christopher Paolini in his “Eragon” series
  13. FALL IN WITH THE RIGHT CROWD “As much as an individual or individualist as you may be, people who are like you in some way, who share your interests and particular peculiarities, do exist, somewhere; if you keep looking, you will find our tribe.”—Isadora Alman, Marriage and Family Therapist, “Psychology Today” (December 2015)
  14. FABOPHILIA is being in love with all things flogged as fabulous, like wine-snobbing and hobnobbing with the muckety-mucks. “I used to think she was pretentious but realized when she’s swanning around in her mink-covered Mercedes-Benz spritzed in a cloud of parfum de Joy, she and Lady Gaga can’t help being FABOPHILES, they were just—born that way.

F-WORDS LAFFS

Frank’s brother, Albert Einstein, was a genius, but Frank was a monster.

Forgive me father, priest, padre for I have synonymed.

Ford Fiesta was found with two potheads; police description called it a Ford Siesta.

Fugitives should wear leather; it’s made of hide.

JOY-GIVERS CELEBRATING A BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK

Sept. 17—Hank Williams

Sept. 18—Ben Carson, MD

Sept. 19—Trisha Yearwood

Sept. 20—Dale Chihuly

Sept. 21—Billy Porter

Sept. 22—Andrea Bocelli

Sept. 23—Ray Charles

FOOD NETWORK SLOW-COOKER GUMBO—NORTH CAROLINA OKRA

(Source: foodnetwork.com)

Each week, “The JOYrontologist” shares a recipe saluting a healthy food produced in America. This delicious and nutritious collection is called “The S.U.N.S. Longevity Cookbook” and highlights vitamin B-3 (niacin) which many gerontologists believe holds the promise of a long, healthy, joyful life.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 lb. andouille sausage, thinly sliced
  • 1 large onion, chopped into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2 stalks celery, cut crosswise into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 (16 oz.) bag frozen sliced okra
  • 1/4 cup long-grain, white rice
  • 3 tbsp. Cajun seasoning
  • One (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Hot sauce and crusty bread, for serving

DIRECTIONS

  1. Layer the chicken, sausage, onion, bell pepper, celery, okra, rice and Cajun seasoning into a large, resealable plastic bag. Pour the diced tomatoes over the ingredients in the bag. Add 1 tbsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Squeeze out the air from the bag and seal. Freeze until ready to use, up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours before cooking.
  2. Pour the contents of the bag into a 6-quart slow cooker. Add 1 cup of water. Cook on low until the chicken is tender and the flavors meld, 6 to 8 hours. Season with salt. Serve with hot sauce and bread.

“The JOYrontologist” RECOMMENDS—pairing the FABOLICIOUS FLAVORS of this dish with Chateau Bonnet Rose’ 2016 ($12-ish). According to winecurmudgeon.com, “This French pink from one of the world’s great, cheap wine producers has enough fruit for the gumbo’s spice, with sweet cherries and strawberries, as well as an almost limestone minerality.”

1,070 JOY-GIVING THINGS FROM MY FIRST 70 YEARS (continued)

819. “Forrest Gump” dinner with author, Winston Groom

820. “Felix the Cat,” frisky cartoons

821. French fries in The Tuileries

822. Finger painting with my best, pre-school friend, Rhonda Burks

823. “Fargo,” the film, and a frequently frozen place I’d like to visit some summer

824. Fargo, Donna aka “The Happiest Girl in the Whole U.S.A.”

825. Farce favorite, “Noises Off”

826. Farce I wrote, “Alabama, Alabama”

827. “Ferdinand the Bull,” a gentle life lesson by author/illustrator, Munro Leaf

828. Focaccia bread pizza in Firenze

829. Fresca, always in my family fridge

830. Fudge so rich it makes your spit thick

831. “Fantastic Mr. Fox” and his family-friendly profanity

832. Falafel at The Pita Stop

833. Fritos, one of my favorite, San Antonio-created things to savor

834. Fig trees, every homeowner in Alabama should plant one

835. Ford Mustang II, the first vehicle I bought without my dad

836. Flax fibers alchemized into fine linen

837. French turtle soup, not merely the mock

838. Frittata, delish, diet quiche

839. Fish and chips and warm beer in a British pub

840. Falling in love

841. “Falling in Love Again” swooned by Marlene Dietrich

FIND FRESH FUN WITH A FEW, FANTABULOUS F-WORDS THIS WEEK!

Read all the installments in this series at www.cullmantribune.com/tag/odes-to-joy-2022.