“I’m special enough” is my daily credo, which was inspired by Bill Cosby.

Fall brings a harvest of memories-in-the-making with upcoming holidays. Hostesses say, “This is a special occasion,” and out comes the good china from deep storage.


But why wait for the rare celebration?


“I’m special enough” is my daily credo, which was inspired by Bill Cosby. Years ago, he bought expensive flatware from an estate auction house. At what occasions did he plan to use his new sterling? Cosby’s quote to the reporter is inexact here, but I recall it as, “Every day. I’m special enough.”


My mother owned a Japanese tea set, a wedding gift in 1951. The dragon teapot was cobalt blue, with gold trim and hand-painted beading. The cups were paper-fine porcelain and when held up to the light, a previously invisible geisha’s face appeared on the cup’s bottom. It was never used, nor were we allowed to touch its seemingly priceless beauty.


I inherited the set and secreted it away in a dark, safe place.


But upon embracing the mindset “I’m special enough,” out it came for no fancy reason, a casual lunch or a sudden cup of tea with friends. Inevitably, someone would ask: “Are you sure you want to use these?”


I’d remember Bill Cosby and say, “I’m special enough and so are you.”


So on a nothing day, we were queens sipping Earl Grey from fancy cups and eating cookies on exotic dragon plates. We felt uplifted and, correspondingly, so were our conversations.


Festive teacups simply replaced everyday mugs, but my friends felt as if something “special” had been created just for them.


Imagine my shock to discover that my heirloom set was worth less than $75. I had taken it to an appraiser to sate my curiosity, convinced it would be the next star of “Antiques Road Show.” But Kutani tea sets are common — too common.


What we find precious is only precious to us. So reap their full pleasure now, especially during these times of belt-tightening and cost cuts.


If not forced to sell such treasures, regular use conjures up feelings of luxury and warm nostalgia.


Besides, what are you saving it for anyway? A younger generation lives a time-constrained, disposable lifestyle. Most likely, your grandmother’s Spode will be transferred to some other dark attic in the future – and like turkeys of Thanksgivings past, may never again see the light of day.


Bring out the best and the finest now. You’re more than special.


Suzette Standring is the award-winning author of “The Art of Column Writing: Insider Secrets from Art Buchwald, Dave Barry, Arianna Huffington, Pete Hamill and Other Great Columnists.” Visit her at www.readsuzette.com.