When the e-mail landed in my inbox last week, I almost deleted it.
Being in the business I'm in, I get all kinds of press releases, "special offers," and other spam that usually gets deleted in just a click or two.
That's just what happened to a note from Adrienne Sioux Koopersmith. But as I was clicking the "Do you really want to delete this?" warning, something about the e-mail caught my eye.
Cleverly titled "This event has YOUR name written all over it...," the e-mail linked to Ms. Koopersmith's blog, which announced that Jan. 6 was a significant day. It is National Smith Day - marked annually on Capt. John Smith's birthday. (You know, Capt. Smith - he served as the leader of the pilgrims at Jamestown and later forged grand relationships with the Indians.)
OK, back to Ms. Koopersmith, a Chicago public relations professional who has been celebrating National Smith Day since 1995 - including marking the day in 1999 with a sÃ©ance with Capt. Smith himself, according to her blog, Koopersmithin'.
My wife, who is celebrating her eighth National Smith Day as a Smith this year, actually sees the day as her family coming full circle in just a couple of generations. She's named after her great-grandmother - her "Big Granny" - whose maiden name was Smith. (No relation - a disclaimer that is sometimes required in the South. After all, Smith is a slightly common surname.)
Anyway, Ms. Koopersmith even offers tips on celebrating the "holidate," as she calls it, including visiting a nearby Smithville/town/burg.
I have my own suggestion: In the spirit of the season of giving, just drop all your National Smith Day gifts at The Mirror. I'll make sure they are distributed to a needy Smith in our community.
Gift distribution aside, I'm apparently already working on the body to match the Jolly Old Fat man.
That, or several clothing companies have shifted to a more "athletic cut" for their clothes during the recent holiday season. Those are the only explanations I can come up with: Why else would all the shirts my parents gave me for Christmas be so tight?
And, now that I have the body and the holiday, all I need is the work ethic and elves.
Check and sort-of-check.
My job requires me to keep strange hours - even the better part of the night on Christmas Eve this year - and the staff of The Mirror toils with elf-like precision each week to produce this great newspaper. They are working long after most folks have already gone home - and in some cases, gone to sleep.
As for me, I'm just proud to work alongside them and hope that their Christmas was one to remember. And I hope that the new year holds all their hopes and dreams.
What else would Smithy Claus want for his folks?