Saturday, November 2, 2013

Ten Things Of Thankful: Merry Christmas on November 1st?

Ten Things Of Thankful Blog Hop
I heard my first Christmas tune on the radio Friday morning.

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" was being sung as the dark clouds of a major rainstorm hovered overhead.  Funny, I didn't see the relevance.  

What is even stranger is that the city postponed the kids going out and Trick or Treating on Halloween.  Instead, they are having all the kids go out on Friday evening to collect their goodies.

So, we can postpone Halloween a day and advertise Christmas a month and a half early.  At the same time, retailers are able to say, "Happy Halloween", but they're not allowed to say, "Merry Christmas" for fear of offending someone.

I may be dense, but I'm still having a hard time understanding that.

First off, I'm not offended by the various religious holidays.  If I walk into a store, and someone proclaims, "Happy Hanukkah", I simply will reply, "Happy Hanukkah" back in good will and respect.  

If groundhogs are the item of worship, I would simply say, "Happy Groundhogs Day" instead.

No, I don't celebrate Hanukkah or Groundhogs day.  But, I'm not offended by them.  Everyone has their right to celebrate and believe as they wish.  

So, why is Christmas under attack all of the time?  And, if a person doesn't believe in Christmas, why do they celebrate it by buying gifts, taking the day off, or, if they work that day, demand double time for the hours they put in?

Why is it okay to have Christmas carols playing a month and a half early, advertise Christmas layaway policies, and proclaim gigantic Christmas savings, but not allow your staff to say, "Merry Christmas?"  Has society grown so self centered and stupid that it doesn't realize that this holiday is based on a Christian belief?  

Have retailers forgotten that the majority of their fourth quarter earnings are based upon how many dollars are extracted from the wallets of those that celebrate the holiday?  Of course not!  But, they seem to be in fear of mentioning the reason why those dollars come their way.  Does not the "Spirit of Giving" come from the belief that the three wise men brought gifts to the Christ child in honor of his birth?  Why then, is it so wrong to mention his celebrated birthday's name?

I really don't care if you are a Christian or not.  Sorry, I'm not a religious fanatic that demands everyone believe the same way.  It's a person's individual right to believe as they wish, and pay the consequences for those beliefs, if there are any forthcoming in the afterlife, if even that exists.

No, I don't care.  But, don't be a damn hypocrite and celebrate a holiday you don't believe in!  Don't give or accept any gifts, do work that day for normal pay, and do go about your business as a tolerant adult should, instead of being a complete hypocritical ass that wants to enjoy the benefits of the holiday while bitching about its name.  And, if you're a business owner that doesn't allow your employees to wish people good tidings in the name of the holiday, then for the sake of your own hypocrisy, don't play Christmas music, advertise Christmas savings, or act like you believe in the Spirit of Giving.  

Happy Holidays?  

Sorry, I don't buy gifts for others to celebrate New Years Day.  

So, now that I've offended you with this rant, let's get on to what the purpose of this post is about.

It’s time for “Ten Things of Thankful” once again!

All of our wonderful hostesses have once again asked us to cast aside our normal philosophies of negative thought and remember those important things that are so commonly either ignored or simply taken for granted.  

So, without further ranting, rambling, or ado, let us begin this uncommon occurrence in our lives and start to become thankful!

1)  I’m thankful for shoes.  My wife is from Alabama and doesn’t really believe in them much.  I guess that’s why the bottoms of her feet resemble what most fire walkers would cherish having (and probably the same color).  Growing up in the country, I found that shoes were most beneficial.  Not only did they make walking much more comfortable, but briars, snakes, and the old style of beer can tabs couldn’t penetrate them as they could the bare bottoms of one’s feet.  Plus, without shoes, imagine how cold walking around in the Winter months would be?  Shower shoes don’t really count as shoes.  Once, as a child, I stepped on a board while wearing flip-flops, and found that a rusty nail easily penetrated them.  Also, I remember once running out in the snow to the mailbox in them and freezing.  Immediately, a lesson was learned.

2)  I’m thankful for gift cards.  I’ve warned most not to ever try to purchase me a gift for Christmas.  Simply make a quick trip to Best Buy, purchase me a gift card, and be done with my shopping.  Don’t buy me another polo shirt that will spend its life hanging lonely in the closet, a tie that will end up at a Goodwill center, or a cd that I already have.  And no, don’t give me a restaurant gift card.  Since most now have no smoking policies, I have a no visiting policy.  Even my wife still has a $10 gift card to Panara Bread Company that she received close to a year ago.  Best Buy only please!  (See, isn’t that simple!)

3)  I’m thankful for wheels.  Damn, where would we be without wheels?  I’d probably be at home, as I’m not one to go out and harness up the old horse and carriage.  Never did it and don’t want to start.  And, if cars didn’t have wheels, what would they have ... Lincoln Logs?  That would make getting about like Fred Flintstone’s car.  “Yabba Dabba Do!”  And, if that was the case, can you imagine braking the car the way they used to ... with their feet?!?!?   I’d have to take my wife with me wherever I’d go so her bare feet bottoms could stop the car!   That's it!  My wife has Fred Flinstone feet bottoms!  "WIIILLLLLMMMMAAAA!!!!"

4)  I’m thankful that college basketball season is starting.  Not only do I completely become immersed in the battles fought, it gives me a viable reason to have my wife watch and record “Dancing with the Stars”, “The Voice”, “Grey’s Anatomy”, “Duck Dynasty”, and other excuses for television viewing in her bedroom.  It’s the one time of the year I can sit back in complete peace and quiet and get wrapped up in television, even though I have deciphered that the NCAA Tourney, that will fill the screens next March, is actually decided in advance by the television programmers as to who will bring them the greatest viewing audience.

5)  I’m thankful that most individuals that vote also smoke marijuana.  That is the only reason that could exist for the short term memory loss problems they have in recalling the stupidity of current politicians and re-elect them to continual terms in office.  Perhaps, the governing body has finally determined that their future positions depend on the continuance of the voters smoking, and are coming around in changing the laws to make this a legal activity.

6)  I’m thankful that Kentucky still allows licenses to carry concealed weapons.  Although it is true that rednecks will always kill rednecks, it doesn’t seem to be in the masses that occur in other states that have much more strict gun control laws.  Perhaps there is acknowledgement among criminals that they really don’t know if their targets will be packing a pistol that keeps some of these crimes from occurring.  Still, one can be assured, if there’s ever an individual that believes he can make a name for himself by shooting innocent people in a public place, it probably won’t be a law officer that takes him down quickly.  It is a shame that society requires this action, but at least Kentucky recognizes that it is necessary.

7)  I’m thankful for Chinese food.  In a day when most lunches consist of fast food filled with additives and preservatives, Chinese restaurants can still provide you with a meal of fresh vegetables and brown rice for a minimal fee.  I’ve started visiting one three or four times a week, shifting between Mongolian Mix and Beef Broccoli for the most part.  For a heaping helping of the main course over rice and an egg roll, I pay $4.46.  I’ve also found that they will substitute chicken for beef in the Beef Broccoli, which takes some of the mystery out of the “is it really beef” question.  “Woof, Woof!”

8)  I’m thankful for a comfortable recliner.  I’m finding that I actually sleep better in my recliner than I do in bed.  (I just spent six hours in it dead to the world.)  I have no idea why, but if I go to bed, I’ll lie there for hours thinking about what I either could be doing, or need to be doing.  If I sit down in my recliner, I’m asleep in a minute or two.  My wife hates it, so I try to do it as often as possible.  After all, she can’t say I’m never around if I’m right there!  Right?  (She has, upon occasion, been known to bump against my feet or turn up the television volume to astronomical levels at times.  But then again, she’s never denied her “bitch” qualities!)

9)  I’m thankful for decent management at Office Depot.  Having sustained a somewhat rude experience last Saturday night at one of their locations, I arrived home and wrote their corporate office.  I remembered to keep attitude and emotions out of it, and only stated the facts and what I expected in return.  Within 24 hours, I received notification that store management had been contacted, and that I would be contacted by them within 48 hours.  Five hours later, I received a very professional and apologetic email from the store manager who stated he had discussed the matter with his staff, and for me to deal either with him or a member of his management team when I returned to have my request granted.  I arrived at the store, and when I stated my situation to a manager there, was surprised to find the incident had indeed been discussed.  I was immediately taken care of, apologies given, and left pleasantly surprised.  So much so, I immediately went to their corporate website and wrote another letter stating the high level of service received.  I’m still in a state of shock as this very seldom happens in this day and age.

10)  I’m thankful that I’ve finally reached the tenth item to be thankful for.  Would you believe this one actually took an hour and a half to write tonight?  Normally, I’m done with these in less than 30-40 minutes.  I’m guessing that I’ve been somewhat distracted by the television.  “Locked Up Abroad” was on for a noise factor, but it drew my attention several times as it first showed a couple of South Africans that had been held hostage by Freedom Fighters in Eastern Asia, and then two ditsy girls that had been caught smuggling cocaine from Peru.  I normally ignore shows like this, but for some reason, it caught my attention.  (God, Is my wife’s television habits rubbing off on me!)

And that’s it!  I’m finally done!  Over!  Complete!  

Man, I’m thankful I got through this one!

However, if you’re a glutton for punishment and want to see how others have struggled to put down their lists, you can see the complete listing of them here!

Oh, by the way, if you do celebrate New Year's Day 
by giving gifts, 
I'll take a Best Buy Gift Card!

Till next week,