Thursday, November 28, 2013

More Than Turkey

On this beautiful and unseasonably warm day I am caught up into cliché thoughts of thanks like the rest of the good nation. I cannot list or enumerate everything I am thankful for, but I want to make an attempt at a truncated list; mostly for myself and possibly my future progeny (assuming I can escape this cold grip of singledom).

I am of course thankful for Squanto. If it was not for his savvy eel hunting ways, Thanksgiving may have never been. With that same token I am thankful for those plucky Puritans that arrived in the good ole land of the free and home of the brave. I am grateful for humor in its many forms. In 1987 President Reagan was the first President to pardon a turkey, exculpating it from its sundry turkey crimes and setting it free to a farm. This became a tradition; and now every year the commander and chief lets a turkey off scot-free in the name of Thanksgiving.

I am also thankful for Jelly Beans, they have so many flavors and they are a major staple of my Dad’s diet. I am thankful for basketball, for it brings me a sort of joy I cannot find elsewhere. I am thankful for great friends. A life without friends is like a life without bread, pretty vapid and depressing. I am thankful for great literature. Books are a way of escaping into a parallel universe that is new yet cries of familiar nostalgia. I am grateful for the juiciness of sarcasm; for without it I do not think I could survive this dry bane of existence. I am thankful for social media, for it brings the nations of the world together and approximates those who are estranged from us. I am thankful for pizza because it is delicious and never gets old. I am thankful for good and splendid films. They have a gorgeous way of whisking us away into a world we are not always clever enough to contrive ourselves, at least not with an accompanying soundtrack. I am thankful for music, without it I would surely go mad and punch more doors.

The list could go on and on. The bottom line is I have been blessed. No matter how downtrodden or chopfallen I am, I know my struggle is temporary and that many have it worse. I have a family that makes every evil and misfortune seem to evanesce effortlessly. I am thankful for grandparents. They always spoil you and say outdated phrases that dare you not to chuckle. I am thankful for babies because let’s face it, they are the cutest things in the world and the closest things to heaven.

I am thankful for freedom. I have never really felt oppression or been in the throes of tyranny, but for that I am thankful. Sometimes it is a blessing to not have the ability to empathize with people.  I am thankful for my religion; it may not be yours, but at the end of the day it is the most important thing to me. And I am thankful for the peace and endless hope that it brings me. I am thankful for all things beautiful. What an amazing and dichotomous planet we have. Sometimes it is necessary to pause from the tedium of life and notice the simple yet majestic aesthetics of this earth.

I am thankful for women. As much as they frustrate and confuse me to no end, they are the better species; for it is not good that the man be alone. We need that pesky helpmeet. And I cannot wait to meet mine.

I am not especially thankful for beets or yams, but I am thankful for any excuse to get loved ones together. If nothing else, what an opportunity to stop and think about the things that this life has given us; for it has truly blessed us richly. I fear not redundancy: I am thankful for my family, and I consider close friends to be family. And collectively these people are my sine quo non.