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Two Places Together

Tuesday is mail day, and I don’t have a lot of quotes to give you. I had some wonderful letters on my story of the Saint Paul Christmas tree being dragged down West Seventh, but modesty prevents me from posting them here. I save this space for the provocative leaning towards nasty, and I just haven’t gotten many of those lately.

You guys have to do a better job, or possibly a worse job. Whatever it is, do something different!

Meanwhile, this is Thanksgiving week, and I thought I’d share the one comment I had on yesterday’s bit on Thanksgiving. It was either that or go over what I get for spam every day, and spam versus turkey isn’t much of a contest.

“I like how Thanksgiving interrupts the whole week. It is what makes it special. There is just enough time to wonder how I got where I am and then I have to go back again. I always feel that my family is a lot closer after Thanksgiving because my trip home is right in the middle of the week and my ‘normal’ life.”

That’s a pretty good endorsement of the whole holiday arrangement, so consider it well. Especially if you have time because you’re changing planes in Atlanta or some other dreadful airport on your way from daily life to family and back.

Meanwhile, remember what we have to be thankful for. As Martin Mull sang on his seminal album, “Near Perfect / Perfect” (long out of print, I think):

Life is better, it’s better than death
Well it could be, but don’t hold your breath.

The simple act of being here is a lot. It seems to violate the Second Law of Thermodynamics, and that by itself is reason to be thankful. If you need more cause than that, well, consider the alternatives to just being alive. Yup. Pass the turkey and savor it a moment, eh?

What I like about today’s letter is how the simple interruption of driving all the way home for a day to see all these people you’ve known all your life is enough to suddenly realize how good the simplest things of all are. If it was a place apart from the everyday grind, it wouldn’t be as interesting. It would be family over here, in this box, life over here in another. It’s the interruption that makes Thanksgiving what it is, that moment just enough apart that you can see both from where you are.

When you stand in that moment inbetween, that’s where life really happens. That’s where you can appreciate the simple beauty of being alive.

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