Thanketh ye

Fellow beneficiaries, i.e. those of us lucky enough to have been born into a land of plenty, we have a lot to be thankful for, and yet little time to remember it… outflanked as we might be by children and cats, each more demanding and destructive of household items than the next. Yes, our two kittens have grown into sullen teenagers, growing weary of their dry food and searching every shelf and surface of the house for something more interesting, usually resulting in a disturbing crash in the middle of the night. It doesn’t help that Seppe, the larger male, is blessed with precious few cat-like characteristics. He can’t jump, balance or land on his feet very well. I’m hoping this also means he doesn’t have nine lives. At the rate we’re going I’ll be testing that out before the end of winter… maybe taking him ice fishing, and letting him slip into a hole in the lake. Karen called me from the vet a couple weeks ago with news that Seppe had fleas. “Are they lethal?” I asked hopefully. No dice.

Yep, I think theoretically I still believe in an equal and inherent worth in all of the earth’s living things. On a given evening, though, after a long day of work and commuting back and forth from such, with the need to get dinner on the table, the kids fed, homework looked at, piano practiced, Isaac and Syd separated from each other’s throats… I think my capacity for loving my fellow creatures is tapped out with that. Then the cats put themselves underfoot with some age-old complaint about their food or their inability to leave the house (where I’m sure they’d fare quite well versus the giant neighborhood raccoon)… and it’s all I can do to not punt them into the next room. No, I stop short of physical abuse, of course, but I think my sharp, sarcastic retorts to their mewing cut them to the quick.

But (smooth segue) how ’bout another cool cat in our president for another term, huh? I love how Romney insulted 47% of Americans and yet still got 48% of the popular vote… thank you, sir, may I have another. Can’t someone just go on TV during prime time and — unlike every other show airing in that time slot — tell people that it’s highly, highly unlikely they will ever become rich and famous? Like same odds as winning the lottery. And yet people vote for tax cuts for the wealthy and treat universal healthcare like it’s some kind of conspiracy. Not that I don’t think there could very well be plenty of conspiracy in the current administration and Congress on all sides of the aisle… I’m sure pharmaceutical and insurance companies make out better than they probably deserve in the new health care plan. I think our banking system has scarcely seen the reforms needed to prevent the wealth gap from continuing to widen. I’m also disappointed every time I remember that the U.S. still holds people in Guantanamo Bay… really? We’re supposed to be the country that upholds human rights.

Sorry, Thanksgiving always brings out the Marxist in me, what can I say? Though it really is one of the better holidays — let’s just not kid ourselves with the quaint story about the pilgrims and native Americans, okay, first graders? “Have you learned about King Phillip’s War, kids? The native Americans were not liking how the settlers kept claiming more and more land for themselves, and they started to form war parties and leave their villages to take animals from the settlers and sometimes fight them. The settlers were a bit short of fighters and weapons themselves… as really everyone was struggling to get by. So you know what the settlers did? They went to a native american village, which was a compact complex of shelters with only a few entrances and exits, and they burned the whole village, filled with women and children, blocking the entrances so that no one could escape. And the native american men were horrified and stunned, as no one had ever fought in this way before.  And a nation was born.”

Too much? Too soon, yes, let’s not tell Syd’s class about all that yet. Plenty of time… maybe Syd will unwrap Howard Zinn’s People History of the United States on her 8th birthday. Ok, tenth.

Goodness, where has everyone gone? Is it closing time already? Um, so I thought I had some more entertaining material to share… instead of the usual incitements… ah, well so you can hear some recent recordings with my band at, on the Single Pancake EP. We need to add one more song, “The Wait” to that EP, but you can download the whole thing as it’s put together now plus any additional tracks from that site for the you-name-your-own price of $0 and up.

Sydney just turned seven… incredibly. Hardly a little kid anymore, and Isaac is turning into a funny little guy as well. Funnier than me, even, and without the politics… a real charmer. He’s got a steady girlfriend already and he brought her quite matter-of-factly as a date to Sydney’s birthday party. Who are we to get between true love? We’re the parents of a four-year-old? Oh, right.

So I hope you all have great Thanksgivings. Forget what I said about the burned out teepees and wigwams… we can think about that more later. For now, it’s turkey and football! Friends and family. And then, black Friday!!!! How quickly it rears its ugly head, this devilish system of ours…

till next time, I’m yours in the brown shirt,



About ericf73

A modern-day combination of Noah, Godot and Clark W. Griswold.
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