Friday, November 21, 2014

November Holidays

Me and mine are heading to our local library tomorrow morning for some holiday shopping and gift-giving ideas at a crafts fair they’ve sponsored for the last half decade (and more). I like the smaller, homier stuff as a warm-up for the approaching A-Shopalypse Now that will launch in less than a week’s time.

But before we get to that place where the mall and the sky collide, and we shall (trust me on that even though, for the record, no one ever wants to (actually no one wants to say they want to; sometimes we lie to ourselves by not telling the whole truth)), I wanted to yammer once more about the absence of coincidence that we observe Veterans Day and Thanksgiving in the same month.

You may not think the two are connected or that they have even less in common than they don’t. You would be wrong on both counts.

Next Thursday we’ll pause (hopefully) at least long enough to not only count our blessings but to be thankful for what we have and then, even before the plates are cleared from dining room tables, rush off to various commercial enterprises’ efforts to steal a march on Black Friday and gather up (even) more stuff we didn’t need two hours earlier to go with our cranberries and sweet potatoes.

Two things we can do. One is easy and it’s a Scout’s Honor thing. Spare a thought for the uniformed Salt of the Earth citizens whose service and sacrifice through the centuries make Thanksgiving, and every holiday (and every day that’s not a holiday, come to think of it) possible.


And find six minutes, I timed it (once with my lips moving and the other time not so much) to read LTG H. R. McMaster’s Veterans Day speech at Georgetown University. See if you don’t agree with him as originally proposed by Aristotle that it is only worth discussing that which is in our power. (Otherwise we're just running our mouths.)

Then resolve to add your power of belief, of persuasion, of whatever you feel your power to be, to that of others like and unlike you to not only make a difference but to be the difference.

-bill kenny

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