I like Thanksgiving. Turkey Day is pretty low maintenance. Far better than Christmas. I had mentioned this to a lady at church the other day. She responded by encouraging me to focus on the "real meaning" of the season. Because she is a nice person and meant well, I refrained from telling her that in my view Christmas had become secularized to the point where it had no "real meaning" other than commercial enterprise.
I am thankful that I know how to keep my mouth shut. What else am I thankful for? Let me count the ways.
I am thankful for my good health, a roof over my head, and financial stability.
I am thankful for all of my friends and family. I am thankful for all of the wishes for a happy Turkey Day that are buzzing into my phone as I type this. I am thankful for all of the phone calls I will make and receive today. I am thankful for my cousin who invited me to lunch today.
I am thankful for the lives of Alicia Weimer, Wendell Jones, Mrs. Hardin, and Rev. Jon Guthrie the latter of whom was like a second father to me. As was Mr. Joe, who somehow clings to life over at Baptist. My friend Carolyn Staley over to the Baptist church has warned me that these things will start coming in waves at this stage in life. So far, she ain't kiddin'. Mr. Joe can't possibly last much longer. But, God will take him in His time, as the Catholics say. He wants to fight on. God bless.
My thoughts are with those who are in pain this Thanksgiving. Mr. Joe's roller coaster has been tough on his girls. Ronnie and the family will have Thanksgiving without Alicia. My friend T is going through a nasty divorce. The world is a hurting place. I am thankful for the trust reposed in me by the people who share their pain with me. It is held in a far more sacred place than the attorney-client privilege.
I am thankful that things have settled down. Looking back on it, I was not prepared for the emotional toll that retirement would take on me. Financially, things are fine. I have enough of my mother in me to worry about whether I need to save more money. But then again, my investments guy thinks I am in a position to "get aggressive" whatever that means. Accordingly, I am thankful, and amused, that they let the likes of me talk to kids about money.
I am thankful that I am now comfortable with the rhythm of my new life. I am thankful that I have meaningful work that doesn't take a lot of time and pays a little money. I am thankful that folks want me to be their lawyer. Uncle Howard says he was never one to turn down money especially if it came looking for him. I may practice law again. I may not. But I sure have been turning money away lately. However, I may not be able to turn down the man I am meeting with tomorrow.
But I can if I want to. I am thankful for options.
Something just hit the front door hard. I'm guessing it is the newspaper stuffed as it is with Holiday ads. I am thankful that it didn't break anything. Memo to paperboy: Take a foot off the fastball why don't you?
I am thankful for the writing gigs for the paper. I am thankful to have been asked to read a story for "The Two Jewish Guys Hanukkah Show" at the Clinton Center next Tuesday night. I am thankful for the opportunity to sing the National Anthem for Naturalization Ceremonies. Such a privilege. I am thankful for the 2 folks who out of the blue encouraged me to write a book last week. I am thankful for my friend K who thinks this is "a damned good idea."
Boy. I dunno. Writing is hard work. Really it is. But thanks for the thought.
So, I have much to be thankful for on yet another Thanksgiving Day. A more grateful man than me does not exist.
He really doesn't. And if he does I want to shake that sumbitch's hand.
Happy Thanksgiving to you as well.