Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble… am I a turkey or a pig?
It wasn’t too many years ago that we would sit down to Thanksgiving dinner, and before we ate we would go around the table and be forced to say something that we were thankful for before we could eat anything. I don’t know if anyone else has this problem, but I hate being put on the spot, especially about things like this where everyone has already said “I’m thankful for the food!” and “I’m thankful for friends and family!” and “I’m thankful for being here with you all today!” I am the sort of person who wants to say something heartfelt and original, but whose mind on these particular occasions goes completely AWOL. So what ends up getting said are things like: “I’m thankful for ….” ::glances around room:: “my Nintendo!!” or “I’m thankful for my talent,” which draw the customary mumbles of “Oh, that’s a good one,” but are obviously causing thoughts of “What a brat,” and “What a pompous asshole,” respectively.
I think the problem that I have with the holiday is not that I’m not thankful for all the subjects of those aforementioned stock answers; nor does it have anything to do with those Native-American massacres that took place after the First Thanksgiving that we all reproduced at some point during kindergarten. Not the massacres, the feast. You know what I mean.
No I think that the fact that we have such a holiday speaks to a societal problem: that it is normal to go about your business and take everything for granted for 364 days out of the year. In America, it’s acceptable to focus on the things that we don’t yet have, to toil away to try and acquire these things, so long as we take 1 day out of the year to remember that we actually have a lot of things already. To me it speaks to the greed that is built into our society.
I’m rather glad that on Thanksgiving Day I don’t feel any more or less thankful than I do on any other day of the year. I think that I don’t take those stock answers for granted most of the time.
The food: I definitely don’t take food for granted. I have it set up so that I run out of food about every week and have to walk to the Supermarket in the cold to get more. I absolutely don’t have it as tough as our hunter-gatherer ancestors, but it’s still an inconvenience. But it has given me a certain amount of satisfaction to have to keep myself fed this year. In fact, I devoted a whole blog entry to food just a few weeks ago, if you don’t believe that I think about it.
The family: Perhaps this was one thing that I took for granted when I was younger. But I specifically remember a few times when I was at CU thanking my lucky stars that I had a relatively stable family to support me through tough times. Nowadays, my family is fragmented, but I still have been trying to show an appreciation for where I came from through genealogical research and the like. So I think that I appreciate family more than perhaps I let on at times.
The friends: I’ve always been a person who prefers to have a few close friends rather than copious what I feel are superficial acquaintances. The result is that I don’t have that many people that I would call friends, but I feel that those that I do have I appreciate a whole lot more. I’ve tried to stay in touch with many of you that I know from high school and before despite the forces of life pulling us apart. Anyway, perhaps you’ll understand from this why I’ve done things like set up this weblog and harass you on AIM all the time 😉
And as for this Thanksgiving, mine was nice, even without people to spend it with. I had a nice dinner and watched a bunch of football. So don’t cry for me! Not that you were anyway, but still.
The one thing that I am thankful for at this time of year that I’m not the rest of the year is the fact that it is a holiday and I have time to catch up on my schoolwork! Yay!! So now I have to go back to reading and composing, and hopefully I can get all caught up by Monday.
Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday!! Until next time…