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Can you live without it?
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For those of you who don’t know me well, you may be surprised to read that I grew up on an almond ranch.  My two sisters married almond farmers and have lived happily ever after in what I refer to as “the dirt.”  I, however, fled to suburbia as soon as I turned 18.  As Eva Gabor used to chant during the Green Acres theme song, “Dah-ling I love you but give me Park Avenue.”

My idea of camping is at “Camp Hilton”— on the concierge floor, please.  My idea of roughing it is reheating leftovers on the stove, instead of zapping them in the microwave.  My idea of catching fish is selecting between shrimp or scallops at the local seafood counter. 

Yes, I’m prissy.

So, I was rather amused when my friend Pam shared the recent release of the Science Museum’s “Top 50 Things We Couldn’t Live Without.”  Sunshine ranked number one on the survey of 3,000 museum visitors.  My husband, who grew up on the Oregon coast, probably concurs.  Number two on the list—Internet connection. Ranking number three, clean drinking water.  An Internet connection over clean drinking water? Really?

Speaking of clean — get this: Number nine on the list was a flushing toilet and number 12 — a shower. From one prissy to another — I’d rank clean water, a flushing toilet and a shower much higher on the list.

So, with all these priorities, just what do you think ranked number five on the list?  A fridge?  Washing machine?  A car?  Well, guess again.  Number five — yes, number five on the “Top 50 Things We Couldn’t Live Without” is....drum roll please...Facebook!

What?  Facebook is more vital than clean drinking water or a shower?  You’ve got to be kidding me!

This whole survey got me stirring.  What would Miss Priss rank on her “Top Five Things” that she couldn’t live without?  Since this was a list of things and not people, I had to think materialistically.  On first pass, here was my list — See’s Candies (chocolate cures everything), a fast computer, a smart phone, a cushy memory foam bed and a soothing warm shower.

Good grief!  What a shallow list! 

Then I started to get serious about this “Top Five” task.  Really. What is it that I could not live without?  And then all of this prissiness came into focus.  I cannot live without access to healthcare. If my life was threatened with a heart attack, or cancer, or any other major illness, I would not survive without medical treatment.  That’s the reason that my city-dweller husband and I are donors to Legacy Circle of Emanuel, the hospital’s annual fund drive that grows new healthcare services in these green acres.

So what’s on your “Top Five” list?  Is it healthcare? If it is, then I invite you to donate to Legacy Circle so that we can build two new cardiac surgery suites at Emanuel.  Our non-profit hospital needs your support for the $10.5 million cardiovascular services program so that we can care for you if crisis strikes. Whether you live in “the dirt” or suburbia, this hospital is about saving your life.  It’s what we do!  

— Pennie Rorex is a member and volunteer for Legacy Circle of Emanuel. To donate, phone 664-5180 or give online at