Posts Tagged ‘Alive and Well’


Thanksgiving challenges my better self.

It’s been a tough year.  My life has not been what I’d hoped for a lot longer than just since the banks robbed us to pay off their gambling debts.

When times are hard it’s hard to find things that I’m thankful for in my life.  I’ve kind of given up on dating.  I haven’t sold a book in a long time.   I’m faced with the prospect of looking for work in ten percent plus unemployment as a partially blind, fifty one year old man whose skills include clever, some philosophy and acting.  I’ve written a series of books that I can’t get agents excited about and the publishers for whom I’ve written successes and best sellers in the past are MIA and likely looking for work themselves.  My prayers have not been answered this year or in any in recent memory.

My mood would not best be characterized as thankful.  I get the sense that I’m not alone these days.  I manage to stay in good spirits for the most part.  If you came by the house and searched, you’d be hard pressed to find the tough year I had.

And then Thanksgiving comes along and calls the question.

My first reaction is to place the back of my hand dramatically on my forehead and demand of the ceiling – cause that’s where god is, don’t you know – “What do I have to be thankful for?”

God doesn’t answer those kinds of prayer from me either.  Let me know if you get different results.  I’ve got a few questions I’m dying to get answers for.

Meanwhile, I’m faced with this holiday that puts my screwed up life right in my face.  Inevitably, as I lamented my pitiful state, I started to think of the pilgrims and those hats with the buckles on them and their dinner with the native people they probably ended up screwing over until the casino opened to even the score.

Those first at the table a couple hundred years ago were celebrating because they hadn’t starved to death or died from exposure.  Woo-hoo! That’s really what they were celebrating.  They were still alive.

When was the last time I celebrated that?

I think that maybe I start my thank you list too far along to get any real traction.  I tend to be thankful when I get what I want, but “Woo-hoo, I’m still alive and anything’s possible” is not where my mind goes when I think about gratitude.

I’m not only alive, I’m in great health and great shape.  I’m still a little too well fed, in fact, but I’ve managed to move down two sizes since this past Memorial Day weekend, thank you very much.  I’m kind of looking forward to eating what I want.  I’m taking the big day off the diet – something else to be thankful for.   And I’m crazy about the friends I’m having Turkey with, so there’s that.

Times are tough but I’ve managed, even just barely, to keep body and soul together, so far.  Not everyone can say that.  I didn’t do it the way I’d have picked, but it still happened.  Maybe my prayers were kinda sorta answered.

But most of all I’m alive.  That’s the big gift from which all others flow.  There was less around to distract those at the first Thanksgiving from that big blessing and maybe with less around, I can see it better, too.

It’s been a bad year in paradise.  We’re a little bruised following our greed orgy but we still have the two ingredients that make everything else possible:  Hope and Life.

That’s something even an ingrate like me can be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!  Thank you for reading my blog.  It means a lot to me.  I’m truly thankful for you.


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