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Reflections on My Recent Reflections....

Posted Oct 18 2008 4:08pm

After that last post, dear reader, I'm sure you're probably wondering where all of that sudden & rather unexpected volcanic spewing of thoughts & emotions came from, especially after a string of several rather calm & uneventful posts.

So, what happened?

No, I didn't just snap & finally lose it. Rather, what was really going on was some Thanksgiving holiday reflection. Yes, some moments were vehement and volatile, and certainly exortative, but there were also many moments of clarity & insight as well.

As I'm sure is the case with many of you as well, the winter holidays bring about much reflection, especially about family and family-related issues. After all, you've got more time on your hands than you probably normally know what to do with in an average day. So during this extended period of holiday down-time, it's not so surprising that we quiet our minds & allow ourselves the inner reflection which comes so naturally to most of us.

Plus, what else is there to do with all of this time? Even after all of the eating & chatting, the TV ballgame, & other such activities, there always seems to be a lull at some point in the day. It's just what happens on Thanksgiving. And that lull & all of the time in between gives you a lot of time to think. ;-)

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For the recent holiday, you most likely spent this past Wednesday driving several hours in the car & then spent Thursday sitting around the dining room table, eating for a good bit of the day. Then perhaps you continued to sit around the table, talking with your family & catching up on the latest happenings. Or maybe you watched the ballgame on TV, dozing off in a hypnotic haze of TV & tryptophan, which was of course induced by a combination of much turkey-eating & the accumulated slothful effect of much couch-sitting & other forms basic inactivity throughout the day.

But then of course, afterward, after everyone had finished with all of the above, perhaps there wasn't much to do.

So perhaps the next logical thing to was to sit there and think. So perhaps you sat around & thought. And then thought some more.

And then again, maybe you just continued to sleep on the couch all day. 8-)

Not many people I know actually plan "activities" on Thanksgiving, other than eating & perhaps watching the ballgame. First of all, absolutely nothing is open, save the occasional gas station & Chinese food restaurant. It's funny how more stuff is actually open on Christmas Day than on Thanksgiving.

Especially if you are idea-challenged when it comes to group activities, it doesn't exactly help you out that almost every kind of recreational-related business establishment is closed on this day.

I mean, maybe if you've got little kids, perhaps you've planned some game-related type of activities to keep them amused 24/7, so that they won't potentially terrorize your relatives & guests with loud wailing, repeated shirt & pants-leg yanking, & other interesting antsy antics.

Well, I have news for you, the kids aren't the only ones who get antsy on this holiday. ;-)

Maybe you got creative, fought the urge for collective sloth, & went outside for some family fun. A hike or a run, or perhaps some fort-building in the backyard with the little ones.

Or some much-needed yardwork. Maybe some of you even tried the following tactic:

"Hey, everybody, I've got a really fun game we can all play together. Let's help Auntie Corey rake all of the leaves in her backyard; the first one to put the most leaves in the bag is the winner!"

Heheheheh, yeah, right. Sure that worked out well for you. ;-)

Or perhaps some of you were secretly thinking about how you were going to tactfully plan your "exit strategy" after about 10 straight hours of doing absolutely nothing & then finally going nuts & trying to scale the walls. Or if "exiting stage left" wasn't an immediate option, perhaps if you were then pondering how you were going to survive another 10 more hours of sitting around & doing nothing, that is, of course, aside from endless conversation with your family & other guests. Or perhaps you took the third option, seeking solace in another room after too much familial interaction.

But regardless of what you did on Thanksgiving, I'm sure you had plenty of time to sit there & reflect -- to mull over the state of the world, your life, & all of the people in it. Maybe you've even posted similarly reflective essays or rants about such related topics on your blogs. ;-)

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OK, I'm only slightly joking (sort of) about the familial interaction overload, but if you're anything like me, you might feel sometimes like the pace of the Thanksgiving holiday is the equivalent of been trapped on the RMS Lusitania with no life-preserver & the whole scene is going in slow-motion. Hahahaha!

Don't know about you, but I usually get really, really antsy when all there is to do is just sit around for hours. The general lack of activity just drives me batty!!!!

Compounding the issue is that I usually feel like pace of Thanksgiving goes in super "slow-mo' " -- I bet the bionic man on his slowest day ("Et-et-et-et-et-et-et-et!") probably moves faster!

Sorry, but I just can't help the restless behavior on Thanksgiving. Since I don't eat a lot of turkey, & hence am not trippin' on the tryptophan ;-), the "turkey-eating coma" doesn't really factor into the equation as much; and so, I can't take the slowness of the day.

I swear, it's not that I don't like to relax. I really, really do. It's just that the usual lack of structured activity in the day, aside from the meal time itself & the eating part, really just throws off my energy level. While I enjoy relaxing, I find that I've usually had my fill by the 4th hour of just sitting around.

And that antsy feeling always seems to surface at some point.

And this especially happens when I go to other peoples' houses for Thanksgiving, which means I'm usually looking to escape for a run at some point, that is, if it's not construed as rude by the host. ;-)

All of that sitting around just makes me want to launch right out the door!

The honest truth is that, for me, Thanksgiving would be much better if a timer bell went off after about 4 hours. That's about all I can stand. I know by now I probably sound like crotchety ole' George Costanza from Seinfield, but I swear to goodness, it's true!

I need to have a defined start & end point when I'm over at someone else's house. It just feels like the day goes on forever & there's not enough activity & stimulation to keep me going throughout the day. (I'll admit that it's partly because I can be a homebody at times, & just prefer being in my own house, especially when it's cold outside.)

So next Thanksgiving, if I do happen to go over to someone else's house, I'm going to bring my running clothes, & head out the door for a run after about 4 hours. And probably take Erik & whomever else will go, with me! Now that's something I can be thankful for. ;-)
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