Thursday, November 24, 2016

What Do We Have To Be Thankful For?

Hi there! Welcome to I’m So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, a giblet blog in a Butterball turkey internet. I’m Dave-El and I’m doing the Mannequin Challenge but not on purpose.

So today is Thanksgiving where we set aside a day to overeat, watch sports and try not to engage family members in conversations that may pertain to politics or religion. Oh, and give thanks.

One of my favorite bloggers, Ken Levine, had this to say for yesterday’s post:

This year I feel so let down by my country that it’s hard to be in a celebratory frivolous holiday mood. It’s hard to be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy when I fear they’ll be taken away.

I do understand Ken’s concerns about the future but I do have to take issue with his statement of feeling “so let down by my country”. Dude, this country is always letting me down.

  • In 15 years, only once did voters actually pick the best singer to win American Idol.
  • American TV viewers kept Two and a Half Men on the air way too damn long!
  • Back in the 1970s? Disco music and leisure suits! What the hell, America?
  • And racism! Don’t forget racism!

I think it’s easy to be thankful when things are going well. But when life’s throwing you curveballs or maybe even rocks, being thankful for things is pretty tough.

And it has been a tough year.

We’ve lost a lot of talented people this year; it’s a hard world where both David Bowie and Prince no longer walk among us. And there have been losses in the comic book industry that have been hard to take; two top of their game artists in the prime of their lives, Darwyn Cooke and Steve Dillon, passed away this year.

Gun violence is still an ever present fear. This spring in Orlando, a single weekend saw the spectrum of violence go from the murder of a single young woman at the start of a promising career to the slaughter of over 4 dozen innocents at a nightclub. And not just ordinary citizens but police officers who put their lives in harm’s way to protect us have become targets for madmen with guns.

On a personal level, I’ve had to contend with some of the most emotionally wrenching decisions of my life as I watched my mother spiral downward and further downward still into the abyss of Alzheimer’s.

Yeah, it’s hard to be thankful.

But there are things to be thankful for. For example, I’m thankful for the care my mother is currently receiving. Not everyone is so fortunate to get the help they need. But the staff at the Alzheimer’s unit where my mother now resides has been incredibly professional and compassionate.

I’m thankful for my daughter whose wit and intelligence delights and challenges me.

I’m thankful for my wife who stayed by my side when no one else did.

I’m thankful for my job which provides good pay for good work. And I’m thankful for my current manager who has been so supportive and encouraging.

I’m thankful for peanut M&Ms and Mountain Dew.

I’m thankful for Seth Meyers, Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee and John OIiver, voices of humor and reason in a world that frequently isn’t funny and makes even less sense.

I’m thankful for shampoo.

I’m bummed we didn’t have any new Doctor Who episodes this year but I’m thankful there’s a Christmas special on the way in a few weeks and a new season next year.

I’m thankful for Lin-Manuel Miranda. Why? No reason. He’s just cool. 

I’m thankful for cheese. What can cheese not make better?

And I could go on. And I will! For example…

I’m thankful for comic books.   

I’m thankful for French fries. And sweet potato fries.

I’m thankful for Netflix. And by extension, I’m thankful for Stranger Things and The Crown as well as binging on 30 Rock.

Of course I’m thankful for Tina Fey.

I’m thankful for the large sweet tea at McDonald’s.

I'm thankful for A Prairie Home Companion, for Garrison Keillor (fare thee well!) and Chris Thile (well met, good sir!).

I'm thankful for butter.

I'm thankful for headphones. 

And I’m thankful…

Well, when you think about it, there is so much to be thankful for. Small things and big things. Things of serious import and things that are just silly. But in a world that seems filled to overflowing with fear and hate, it’s more important than ever to remember what we’re thankful. And we realize all that we have to be thankful for, we realize that fear and hate are outnumbered and we can overcome them.

And we should be thankful for that.

Thank you for reading today. Until next time, remember to be good to one another. 

Is Dave-El Stressed?

A day after Dave-El's birthday, another year older and closer to death, am I feeling stressed? YES! Yes, I am a bit stressed!!!