Good morning and greetings, holiday season fans. That’s right, for many, this past week and the next five are their favorite times of the year. For me, it’s the NBA playoffs and anytime I get dial tone. If I listen closely, I can almost hear Andy Willams singing, “it’s the most wonderful time of the year,” or for my non-Amish friends, the most wonderful time for a beer.
I know I may be a little premature with this, but nothing else came across the radar scope this week, so bring on the holiday festivites. What red-blooded, white-celled American doesn’t love the endless TV commercials, holiday parties, and most importantly, buying gifts for people you don’t give a rat’s tush about? If I seem a bit cynical about the upcoming mistletoe invasion, I apologize to my cyber constituents. It’s just my stream of holiday unconciousness.
Now we just finished Thanksgiving, where I ate enough turkey to jump start my pilgrimage to the Mecca in Milwaukee. It was a great time to gather with family and reflect on some things that I’m grateful for. Here are a few random post holiday thoughts.
I’m grateful that it’s not 2012 and there isn’t real talk of Sarah Palin becoming the first female president. Besides my head literally exploding, I don’t think my family is ready to move to Canada, Cancun or the Canary Islands.
I’m grateful there is gravy. Without it, Thanksgiving for many would be like living in Kansas or the Sahara Desert. Very dry. Man cannot live on jellied cranberry sauce alone.
I’m extremely grateful that I have my health. Unlike a friend of mine, and I’m not going to mention Steve Margolin’s name, I’m not excited about getting older. Every time I feel a pain in my chest, I wonder, am I having a heart attack? At this poinsettia in my life, I’m just happy to play basketball and come home in the same clothes I left in. As I’ve said before, I’d like to strangle the guy who coined the phrase, “you’re not getting older, you’re getting better.” Listen, I may come off as “Mr. Positive,” but soon-to-be 58 is not the new 57. That’s Heinz.
I’m grateful for my wife, children and our golden retriever Summer. Without my lovely Allison, how else would I have ever known there is sometimes another way to look at situations? Without my children, every Saturday of my life would have been spent sitting in the dark at the movies digesting some form of chocolate, followed by Chinese cuisine. Wait a minute, that doesn’t sound too bad. And without Summer, and with my apologies to my daughter Aimee, who else would I look at 100 times a day and say, “you’re such a good girl.”
Of course I’m grateful for my brothers, my imaginary sister, extended family and special friends, and those reading it know who I’m talking about. I’m especially fortunate to have two parents who are still alive and have allowed me to open a catering service that provides them with home cooked meals that you won’t find being prepared on the food network. Hot and ready to go, gratuity already included.
I’m also damn grateful to be living on the central coast of California and not doing a tour of duty overseas in Afghanistan or Iraq. How difficult it must have been for the thousands of military families on Thanksgiving with a loved one so far away and playing hardball with the Taliban or Al Queda. For many of us, the war is a forgotten item on the news but for those families it’s the lead story every night.
There is so much more I am grateful for but I don’t want to get too mu shu or pen the sequel to “War and Peace.” Let me just say I’m so lucky to have this forum to be able to write about whatever sprints across my mind and share it with you readers. The fact that I can throw some world-class sunrises and sunsets from this cold water paradise only adds fuel to the fire of my mind. If I’ve made you think or laugh or say, “wow, that’s gorgeous,” well, in the words of my favorite Hanukah Bush, “mission accomplished.”
That brings us to today’s photo op. This was a Saturday night a couple of week’s back, where the clouds and sky brought many along the westside to their feet with almond joy and late afternoon delight. I was perched along West Cliff Drive at Stockton Avenue, and this sunset glowed for a long while after dusk, leaving me not only with the satisfaction of knowing that I would be sharing it with all of you, but that I could almost leave behind the thought of recent sunsets missed. As I said, almost.
On to some great late night. “TSA says they are going to crack down on the invasive pat-downs. In fact, one agent was transferred to another parish.” –David Letterman “This year marks the first Thanksgiving in which travelers will get molested before they get to their uncle’s house. You know, if I wanted somebody halfheartedly patting my groin without eye contact, I’d get married.” –Seth Meyers “The TSA has issued some special packing tips for travelers before Thanksgiving weekend. They say not to bring food, sharp tools, or any shred of dignity.” –Jimmy Fallon
David Letterman’s “Top Seven Questions to Ask Yourself Before Becoming a TSA Agent”
“Do I need a degree in groping?” “Am I only doing this for the sweet TSA uniform?”
“If I find explosive underpants, may I keep them?” “Should I practice by frisking people on the street?” “In five years, whose pants do I see my hands in?” “Do I really want to know what a fat guy’s thighs feel like?” “May I frisk myself?”
“Former President George W. Bush has published his memoirs, called ‘Decision Points.’ Bush was asked if he used a ghost writer and he said, ‘Nah, I stopped believing in those after I turned 12.’” –Jay Leno “At the dedication of his Presidential Library, George W. Bush said it’s long been his dream to build a building for teenagers to drink behind.” –Seth Meyers “Sarah Palin’s new book can be found right next to George W. Bush’s new book in the ‘Apparently Anyone Can Write One of These’ section.” –Jimmy Fallon
“That’s right, Palin has a brand new book. And you thought Thanksgiving dinner makes you drowsy.” –David Letterman “In her new book, Sarah Palin says she once gave up chocolate for an entire year just to prove she could do it. Still think she’s not qualified to be President?” –Jimmy Fallon “I’ll tell you how confident Sarah Palin is about the upcoming Presidential election. She’s already started writing her inaugural address on her hand.” –Jay Leno
Well, that’s our show and the last blast for November 2010. I hope the Thanksgiving holiday was a pleasant and a leftover-filled experience. And for those those menorah fans, let me wish you a Happy Hunakah, when I begin the always memorable apple sauce and sour cream-filled journey to latke city. For those of you keeping stats, it starts on Wednesday. We’ll catch you in punting formation. Aloha, mahalo and later, Blake Griffin fans.