Today is Thanksgiving, which means that…
1) Most people forgot about my birthday on the 21st. Par for the course, though. That’s okay, I got some GREAT birthday wishes from the people that I do care about!
2) It’s time to stay away from the malls and stores during the weekends because that’s when the people will do their holiday shopping. Traffic in those areas will SUCK and parking will definitely SUCK.
3) Plenty of people will put their religion on their sleeve… and on your sleeve too… and scream about “JESUS IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON!” Meanwhile they’ll put up their decorated trees (a PAGAN tradition), hang up their holiday wreaths (another PAGAN tradition), and think about whom they’d like to catch under the mistletoe (yet another PAGAN tradition).
You gotta give the Jewish faith some credit… their tradition with the candles and the dreidel may seem corny, but at least they didn’t steal the traditions of other religious beliefs to make it seem more appealing. Then again, if they did they might have come up with some better songs.
By the way, if you have some issue with the fact that there ARE other religious celebrations that go on during this time, do yourself and the world a HUGE favor and stick a huge candy cane up your ass. Trust me, you’ll feel better afterwards.
4) There will be a lot of media attention on those who are doing without. There are those who will be celebrating Thanksgiving in a hotel or in a shelter someplace because of this year’s killer hurricanes. I’m talking about people who have lost EVERYTHING except the clothes on their back. This kind of story is all done for OUR sake, folks. If you want to be thankful about something, be thankful not just that you’re doing well, but also that there ARE people who will bend over backwards to help out those who are doing without.
5) There will be this HUGE, HUGE push for people to BUY, BUY, and BUY stuff from now until December 25th! And to put it all on credit! And to get people gift cards that MAY or MAY NOT be worth the same amount of money if you let them sit for a few months! Just remember that whatever you put on credit now WILL come back and kick you in the ass in January. With times being tough and money a little tight, it’s probably best to think small. Big business will hate me for saying it, but it is the truth.
6) People will be pressured to give an accounting of the things that they are thankful for. And of course I’m no exception, because there are plenty of things that I am thankful for this year.
So here goes my list…
I’m thankful for having a great job that allows me to pay my bills.
I’m thankful for having a pet that loves me to death and is actually upset when I’m not around.
I’m thankful for being able to move to an area extremely close to work, where most of the things that I need are right down the street. I really wish that I had the forethought of doing this last year.
I’m thankful that my move was handled relatively easily. I put a lot of effort into it, and I’m still doing that because there’s still a few things that need to be resolved.
I’m thankful for having family members that do care about me and have been willing to help me through this move to my new location.
I’m thankful for having people that I can call friends who make me smile when I really need one. Some of my friends don’t even have to do anything other than say “Hi” to make my day, and I am truly thankful for those people.
I’m thankful for having a DVD player so I can watch movies when the programming on TV sucks. By the way, if you wanted to know what TV would be like without the adult channels and adult movies, then go watch Telemundo! Either that or the “Spring Break Party Video” infomercials. At this rate, I’ll be making Spanish my second language in no time!
But there are also things that I CANNOT say that I am thankful for… and these are things that you’ll hear other people talk about. I think we need to list these things as well, because sometimes being “thankful” is really just a matter of rote. Being “thankful” is sort of like saying “Happy Holidays” or saying “I support the troops”. They had might as well come out and admit to being “thankful” that there’s oxygen to breathe or blood to keep pumping. I think if we’re going to be socially compelled to list the things that we’re thankful for, that we should also be able to go down the list of stuff that we CANNOT be thankful for.
I can’t say that I’m thankful that I’m living in a country where we have “all of this freedom”, because not only are we taking that freedom for granted, but quite often that freedom is sacrificed on the altar of “safety and security”. I CAN say that THERE ARE still people who DO give a damn about freedom in this country and are willing to go to bat for it, even when they’re being branded as “traitors” and “losers”.
I can’t say that I’m thankful that George W. Bush is in office, because I’m a Libertarian. I am NOT thankful for the PATRIOT Act, I am NOT thankful for the self-righteous ass-clowns who define patriotism as blind and mindless complacency, and I am NOT thankful for the Bush Imperium’s blatant war on anything sexual in nature! I can only say that I am thankful that the Imperium hasn’t YET turned this country into a bible-thumping fundamentalist theocracy, although they ARE leaning things in that direction.
I can’t say that I’m thankful that gas prices are going down. This is just a short-term reprieve from a much LARGER issue that is STILL not resolved! We need to get ourselves off of foreign oil, and the Bush Imperium REFUSES to deal with this matter. They’re betting the bank on their “best buddies” in Saudi Arabia… which will cost us in the long run. Besides, in a few weeks we’ll be hearing about the problems with home heating oil prices, and those same oil executives will soon be back before Congress explaining why they’re screwing over Grandma.
Finally… I know this one is going to piss a few people off… but I can’t say that I’m thankful that we have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. I really can’t. I can’t be thankful that we have soldiers putting their lives on the line on a daily basis. Getting Saddam Hussein out of power was inevitable, not desirable. Getting that country’s act together is needed, not wanted. I can only be thankful that there IS some progress in Iraq, that people haven’t forgotten about the soldiers there, and that at some point they WILL hopefully not be needed there and would hopefully be brought back home and NOT be dragged into yet another military conflict.
Hopefully next year I will have some more things to be thankful for… and fewer things that I cannot be thankful for.