American Thanksgiving. A day to gather together with family and friends and eat massive amounts of carbs. A day to remember the Pilgrims and pretend that the very first Thanksgiving was festive for them AND the Natives. After all, rewriting history is what we are all about as a nation so why should today be any different?
But that, actually, isn’t why I am writing today. Today I wanted to write about all the reasons that Thanksgiving is my second favorite holiday (behind Halloween of course).
- Thanksgiving isn’t about commercialism. It doesn’t require any gift giving other than the sharing of time and culinary offerings. Your shopping list for the holiday consists mostly of edibles and doesn’t require visiting the mall. That is a holiday celebration I can get behind!
- You don’t need to be religious to celebrate. Thanksgiving doesn’t require you to be down with an organized belief system other than thankfulness. And we all know that people can be giving and kind without dogma. Thanksgiving is about being human not whether or not you believe in a deity.
- It falls on a Thursday every year so if you are not in retail you can generally take Friday off and have a four day weekend. Who doesn’t love four days away from the drudgery? And after all those carbs you will definitely need the time to recoup.
- Thanksgiving is the last hurrah before the commercial holiday season. It’s status as kind of in the shadow of Christmas (and in some stores Thanksgiving barely exists at all) makes it a relaxing day that doesn’t have to be anything but exactly what it is. A day to gather, eat, drink, and relax.
- You don’t need to have a family to enjoy Thanksgiving. It is a holiday that can be shared with friends, colleagues, acquaintances, etc. People invite each other over to share in the day and there are no family only rituals that make the guest feel awkward.
- People show their good nature and charity. Christmas spirit has got nothing on the charity shown on Thanksgiving. People volunteer to serve fellow humans, give money to good causes, and generally express a charitable nature on and around the holiday. And religious affiliation makes no difference. Helping others is something that humans can do no matter their religious affiliation. Even those that have no affiliation.
- Thanksgiving is not in your face like other holidays. People aren’t upset if you wish them a happy turkey day instead of Thanksgiving. There is only one day to gather and the celebration revolves around food and not gifts. It’s a good time without all the pomp and circumstance.
- There is a parade dedicated to it. In NYC. I think that seals it. Thanksgiving rocks.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving, however you celebrate. I hope it is relaxing and fun. It is the last hurrah before the holiday craziness, after all, so take advantage of it!