Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanks - Revised Two Years Later!

Exactly 2 years ago I wrote this piece about Thanksgiving.
The country and the world have made tremendous changes since then.
My life has changed in many ways as well but many of the thoughts and wishes have not.
The post below is mainly a reprint with fresh comments noting the changes since 2009 in deep blue.

Thanksgiving week is greeted with many different emotions throughout this country and it is the official/unofficial start of a traditional holiday season.  Although this year many stores hurting for sales had their Christmas trees and decorations out before Halloween!

In the past we celebrated the day and or weekend by having a Thursday dinner with friends and family and then getting to sleep early so we could get up and bust some doors at a local retailer.

Those who eschewed the "Black Friday" crowds in favor of a more restful day off might play with their kids or sit around a fire and talk.  (You do remember sitting and talking, right? NO, NOT TEXTING - TALKING!)  No change there!

The stores start putting out their 'countdown' calendars letting us know in no uncertain terms how many shopping days we have left until Christmas. The pressure builds. I think they chose Christmas because it was always easy to subtract from December 25th instead of having to figure out when Hanukkah was. (I think it's early this year!)  Nope - It's right on time as the 2 holidays coincide - A rarity that is sure to fire up and focus a friendly frenzy of feverish shopping. (Too many "F" words?)

Every year this is a particularly bad time for those among us who are suffering from depression. The sight of others being happy tends to exacerbate anxiety and the bad thoughts occasionally culminate in tragedy around the end of December.  
We should all be on the lookout for anyone we feel might fall prey to feelings such as those because with the economy in the dumps there may be many more than in previous years.  
And with the economy continuing to be in the toilet for all but the well to do please keep an eye out for loved ones, friends and acquaintances who may be suffering silently.  Don't let them become a statistical footnote to the recession.

I have suffered through my own year of living dangerously as I was a victim to economic pressures at my old job. Luckily I am not smart enough to get too depressed. But seriously, it is not good and it is important to lend a hand where possible.  My hand was finally received by my new employer this March and I have been working ever since.  I am not earning at the level of my past employment but far more than my unemployment.  I hope others can join me soon.

Personally I could never consider doing myself harm. As my mother used to say, "I could never commit suicide, I'm way too much of a coward!"  No change there!

So in the spirit of this post and going against my Eclectic Curmudgeon title allow me to list a few things of which I am thankful for. I hope you will add your own to the list.

I am thankful that:

... I still have my father around as he nears the 92nd anniversary of his birth.
He will be joining my family for Thanksgiving dinner. (I'm driving.)  Sadly this has changed.  My incredibly kindhearted dad fell victim to a fall just before his 93rd birthday and entered peaceful eternity on April 13.  Aside from his family many disabled vets will miss him dearly.

... I am also picking up my (few years younger) mother-in-law (That's right, I said mother-in-law! Get over it.)  
She is still vibrant and living on her own as a snowbird. But for full disclosure I will not be driving her this year. :-)

... My wife is a good intelligent woman and she still has her job.
 She still works for NYC full time but is classified as a part timer so benefits can be withheld.  Hey Bloomberg didn't get to be a billionaire by accident!

... My two children are healthy and beautiful. (I dream of their bright futures regularly.)  
This will never change.
AND they are both finished with the money pit of college - Whew.  

... I still have much of my hair although more and more of it finds its way onto the brush every 
day.  YUP!

... I have most of my health, 'nuff said.  

... I can still see very well. (And it only cost $700 for the glasses!)  
And several hundred for the exams etc. Luckily the costs are covered by my insur, wait, uh, oh well never mind.

... I have some good friends. (Are there truly any other kind?)  I could always use more and this year I lost some really wonderful ones.  So call me, we'll do lunch.

... I can still finish the Sunday Times crossword puzzle - usually without too much help.
 Surprisingly ditto - although I sometimes lack the patience to actually do it!

... I am able to find humor in the strangest of places which is good since more places are strange these days than ever before.  

And most of all I am thankful that I can put all these things down on this blog, because maybe, just maybe someone who doesn't think they have anything to be thankful for will find something here that they missed. And if I can save someone from being miserable then I will be even more thankful.

Think of that and these two phrases during this holiday season:

'Save a life; save the world'
'It is better to give than receive.'  (I'm a 40 regular with a 34 waist medium build & I love vodka.)

May you have the best of all worlds.

Have a Happy Bird Day! (And a Happy Holiday Season)
Have a Happy Bird Day! (And a Happy Holiday Season)

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