I probably haven’t had a traditional Thanksgiving for a few years now. While I must admit, I do miss having a home cooked, multi course, dinner with my whole family in California where I can lay on the couch after dinner, unbutton my pants, and watch the Harry Potter marathon, some things will always remain the same. No matter what, my family – my mom, dad and sister – and I always are together for Thanksgiving, whether we’re at home, San Diego, or this year in New York. We may not have a home cooked dinner – last year we had a buffet style Thanksgiving dinner at a hotel in SoCal, and this year we’ll be having dinner at the Time Warner Building’s Porter House – but the food is always the best. Most of all, despite where we are, or who decides to join our family for dinner, the conversation is always good, and its always a great time. THANKSgiving is obviously the time where we reflect upon what we have and are grateful for.
Family*. Being with the people I love and care about is not only a privilege but something I am very thankful for. Typically I spend my holidays with my parents, sister, aunt, uncle and cousins. We’re a tight knit family. I’ve denoted the asterisk because as many of you do as well, I think the word “family” is much more inclusive. When I think of family, I automatically include my best friends, close friends and family friends. Essentially the people I love and care about and the people who love and care about me.
A roof over my head. Of course I bitch about my living situation all the time. Its dirty. Theres honking outside. The heater doesn’t work. The air conditioning doesn’t work. There are probably dead rats fermenting in the walls. The garbage chute stinks. Theres probably mold in the bathroom. Theres not enough counter space. Okay, its not that bad at all actually. I’m just dramatic. The list goes on and on. I will probably continue to bitch and moan. But the fact of the matter is, at the end of the day, I have a warm, snuggly, lovely place to live and I am very fortunate. During Hurricane Sandy when we were forced to evacuate our building, I realized that I take having warm, running water, electricity, heat, and my own place, for granted.
A sense of humor. You cannot get by in life without a sense of humor. I repeat: you cannot get by in life without a sense of humor. Sometimes I’ll be in public, and either say something really awkward and weird or funny to a stranger. The way they respond tells exactly what type of a person they are: A) They’ll think I’m hilarious and we’ll instantly become best friends. These people are the cool optimists in life. Can’t live without them. B) They’ll humor me. But call me out on being a freak. These people are the realists in life. Again, can’t live without them. C) They’ll scoff at me, ignore me, or look at me in complete disgust. These are the pessimists / people with sticks up their asses. These people, you can live without. In fact, I highly suggest you do so, or else they will bring you down. A sense of humor can help you in a variety of situations, crises, awkward moments, and it builds personality. Don’t have one? Get one.
Food. Duh. Thanksgiving is all about
gaining 10lbs eating delicious foods. Sweet potatoes, turkey, stuffing, pie, CRANBERRY SAUCE. Food is the fucking shit. Thanksgiving food, in particular is the bomb.com/delicious/amazeballs.nom So with that, I leave you with a video of the purveyor of all things delicious/fattening/BUTTER… Paula Deen. Please watch it, I promise you will NOT regret it. Seriously, you won’t.
There are very little / no other times we have as a culture where we devote a time to give thanks for what we have. Whether you’re religious / spiritual or not, I think that its always important to take time every so often to be aware of what you have, and be grateful for it. We don’t do it enough. I certainly don’t. So I urge you, and I’m challenging myself – to at least once a week, think of one thing you are thankful for, no matter how little.
Can you imagine having a little spawn running freely through the world? No? Me neither. Maybe one day in the far distant future it will happen, but not any time soon of course. That’s why this week I’m thankful for “birth control”. And by birthcontrol I not only mean contraception, etc. but other types of birthcontrol… such as babysitting, teaching children to swim, managing a pool overrun by children, looking at children, ugly babies (kidding. Or am I?). etc. Thank goodness for these things… or else everyone in the world would turn into the Octomom – minus the pornstar bit. Just the thought of having an offspring that had a fraction of my genes is frightening. Sadly, I’m not at the point of megalomania where I want hundreds of mini me’s running around all over (people like that exist – just watch the Law and Order SVU episodes where egotistical sperm donors father like 100s of kids… hey, if its on Law and Order, its pretty fucking true). Despite the fact that I teach a Parent Tot swim class (babies in the pool with moms / DILFs), I am still utterly terrified of babies most times. Maybe I just don’t have that maternal instinct that all girls who love babysitting have. Who knows. Either way, thank God for those screaming children on public transportation, the kid with chocolate(?) all over his face throwing a tantrum on the side of the street, and all the children who are a huge pain in the ass and make me think to myself “Never, ever, ever, will a child like you belong to me”. Here’s to hoping that when I grow older and if I decide to have a kid, it will be as well trained as a guide dog puppy reject (you know, just the right amount of cuteness, obedience, and fun). Sorry, I just went there. Thank you various forms of “birth control”.
Being back home for the summer is really refreshing. Not only do I get a little break from the madness and craziness (yet loveliness) that is New York City, but I also get to spend some time with my family… and my dog. Being back in suburbia is quite lovely, the weather is beautiful, its nice having a car (not so nice dealing with the crazy gas prices), and nice to see old friends. Home cooked meals, sleeping in my own bed, watching my favorite baseball team – are definitely a plus. As much as I miss NYC, as they say, there’s no place like home!
What are YOU thankful for?
Living in New York City has countless perks, one of them being live music shows in incredible venues. Earlier this week I was fortunate enough to see FLORENCE+theMACHINE at Radio City Music Hall, and it was unbelievable. She was absolutely glorious in her beautiful flowing dress, and she sounded amazing. This was actually the second time my friend, Dani, and I were able to see Florence live. Earlier this year I won tickets to the MTV Unplugged recording of Florence at the Angel Orensanz Foundation… another amazing venue. I couldn’t believe how beautiful the place was, and it so suited her well. But there is something to be said about seeing live music… the crowd, the atmosphere, the ambiance all brings it together for an incredible experience. Dani and I were also able to see Gotye (&Kimbra) back in March where Gotye put on an amazing show. Words cannot describe how beautiful it was. I’m very thankful that I’ve been able to see these amazing artists in such amazing venues throughout the city.
What are YOU thankful for?
“Out there things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.
And then things start to happen,
don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along.
You’ll start happening too.”
I was raised on Dr. Seuss stories, and even though I read them while I was a kid, I love how applicable they still are today. I came across this video, which I will have bookmarked forever, its so amazing, and it really illustrates the wonderfulness that is Dr. Seuss. Not only is this video a great pick me up – which came in time because this week has been particularly rough – but everything about it is just beautiful…. the people in it, Seuss’ words, the images, Burning Man. The words in this book, Dr. Seuss’ last book before his death, are absolutely inspiring – without being too optimistic, and the right amount of realism. It’s perfectly inspirational, so if you have a few minutes in your day, I would definitely suggest giving this a watch! Thank you Dr. Seuss for your loveliness!