Thanksgiving and Black Friday

Happy belated Thanksgiving to all of you.

Better Half and I took pleasure in a relaxing holiday. We watched the Macy’s Parade, lazily prepared our dinner and goofed off. Our (orgasmic) duck cooked to perfection, the Parisian green beans tasted spectacular, and the giblet stuffing (a tradition in this household) was moist. It was an effortless yet elegant fare and we completed the meal with a pumpkin pie.

Really, more people should aspire to unwind on a holiday.

Steubenville has a bit more culture: some enterprising team opened up a wine cellar nearby. Better Half bought a lovely 2004 Zinfandel Mendocino produced from the Graziano vineyards. He blended the duck seasoning to compliment this wine. It was a flawless match after decanting.

Today is Black Friday and I haven’t any interest in leaving this house. People are undeniably impractical. Has Christmas become so commercial that we can not usher in the holiday season sans the repulsive compulsion to shop? Are we so rapacious that we insist upon bestowing our family members and friends with rubbish procured at half price at Penny’s or Wal*Mart? Do our children really need more than ten toys under the tree and in their stockings? Bah, humbug.

Christmas is a time to ponder peace and goodwill towards mankind. That reflection should take place every day but often we are too caught up in our own selfish amusement to spare the poor soul next to us any thought. It is as if Christmas has turned into the time to purge all the guilt from our systems: I am so sorry that I have neglected you for 364 days but we shall make amends; please enjoy this tube of underwear and a singing trout. Bah, humbug.

If you really must bestow a gift, do it when I need it most. Offer a shoulder when I am on the verge of a good cry. Match my laugh as we sit together and watch a comedy. Take me out for a light supper when my body is too sore to cook at home.

I am most fortunate that my husband does all of that just when I need it most. He will go out for bread and upon return shout, “close your eyes!” and then present me with a stuffed bear or a card. It is the thought that counts and his little offerings strip away my pain and warm my heart. I haven’t a clue as to what he is giving to me for Christmas. I would be content with hearing his laugh and sharing the couch.

My parents can not afford to give a plethora of gifts. My mother requested a short gift list and I told her that my biggest hope was to put my office put in order. She is sending a gift card from Lowe’s and that shall cover the cost of paint. Would a sweater or jewelry be better? Hardly. Sweaters go out of fashion and jewelry can’t all be worn at once. I will reflect upon my parents’ love and generosity every time I sit down to type.

What are you doing on Black Friday, dear Readers? Are you out in the crush of humanity frenetically attempting to check off your gift-giving list? I advocate that you take a moment today to reflect upon those that you shop for. Give what is needed to those in need. Giving Christmas gifts to everyone will not make you seem generous or benevolent if you pay no attention to these people throughout the rest of the year.

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