Mugs of Life
by John Norberg, humor columnist s

We acquire things as we go through life. Some people acquire wealth. Others acquire, art, books, friendship.

I acquire coffee mugs.

I'm not certain when this started. I bought them on trips. People gave them to me.

I have basketball mugs, baseball mugs, football mugs, hockey mugs. I have 12 different mugs from Disney World. I have mugs from Ireland, England, France, Germany, Las Vegas, New York and an alligator wresting show in Florida.

I have mugs in the kitchen and stored in boxes around the basement. On my desk I have a coffee mug filled with pens that don't work.

Some guys give their wives jewelry. I give mine coffee mugs -- Christmas, Valentine's Day, birthday mugs.

I have mugs that celebrate my heritage ("You can always tell a Norwegian, but you can't tell him much;" "Pray for me, I married a Norwegian.")

I pick out a coffee mug in the morning depending on my mood. Am I in a sports mood or a Las Vegas mood? Do I feel like the Little Mermaid or Elmer Fudd?

I lot of mornings I'm pretty much of an Eeyore.

The problem is I'm not usually the first one in the kitchen for coffee in the morning.

Me: "Somebody took the coffee mug I was going to use."

Wife: "There are dozens more on the shelf."

Me: "I know, but I want the one you have. Hurry and finish so I can use it."

We were on vacation recently and my wife found me in a store checkout line with a souvenir coffee mug.

Wife: "We don't have room for any more coffee mugs in our house. If you buy that mug, something is going to have to go."

I was a little afraid she meant me.

Wife: "Why do we need so many coffee mugs?"

Me: "You never know when a couple hundred people are going to show up for breakfast."

Wife: "We need to get rid of some of them."

But what are we going to do with them? Give them away as Christmas gifts? Hide them in the coat pockets of our friends when they come to visit?

Wife: "You can start by getting the boxes of mugs out of the basement."

She's right and I did it. There are no longer boxes filled with coffee mugs in the basement.

I moved them to the attic.

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