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Chasing The American Dream

November 24, 2004


Merci beaucoup. Muchas gracias. Grazie. Domo arigato. Doh je. Toda raba. Spasibo. Danke. Thank you very much. Turkey Day is upon us once again. A day where each of us, in our own way, actually makes the effort to say thanks for the wonderful life each of us has. 2003 was the worst year of my life. My New Year’s Resolution was to simply make 2004 a better year. It began with promise. A new job, a new city, a new beginning of sorts. But for many reasons, which if you hang around here long enough you’ll understand, 2004 has topped 2003. I bottomed out, oh six months or so ago, but I’ve since ‘found’ myself as you’ll see in upcoming posts. And for that, I am very, very thankful. Like I’ve stated previously, it’s good to recognize and be thankful for the precious lives we live. I’m really looking forward to 2005. I’m gonna kick some serious ass. But I guess I’ll save that post for NYE.

I love this time of year. From now until the Monday after New Year’s Day, when people have to go back to work, we seemingly undergo a ‘Grinchian’ transformation. How could we ever forget that moment when The Grinch finally ‘gets it.’ His ugly, frowny, Mick Jagger-looking face slowly turns upside-down into this huge glowing smile, an energy aura all around him, his heart growing 10-odd sizes.

Don’t you notice that people this time of year are all wearing Grinch smiles, being happy, festive, courteous (sans the fights for the latest toy of the year or the Seinfeldian Chocolate Babka), etc.? We all let one extra car in ahead of us, we tip servers more, we honor the hard-working mailman, paperboy, or garbage man. Signs fill main streets with wishes of “Seasons Greetings” or “Happy Holidays.” Colorful lights and cool decorations line our neighborhoods. Charlie Brown’sLinus and Lucy” Christmas song floods the radio airwaves. Shiny, happy people.

Isn’t the euphoria awesome? It’s a shame it can’t last, isn’t it? Yeah, inevitably the saddest day of the year is that first day of work in the New Year. Reality sets in. You’re not happy to be at work, and you yell at the first person who has the nerve to dial your extension at 8:30 in the morning. We’re Grinches once again. What are we gonna do to change this? What if we all said to ourselves, “I’m gonna see how long I can keep this streak of happiness going. How long can I go before I lose it? Maybe I can make it to February?” Hmmm, I dunno. Anyone have some ideas?

In the meantime, Happy Holidays everyone.


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