Anti-Thanksgiving | Mark’s Remarks


Every year, a couple of folks I know do something that may be shocking to some. I find it hilarious: they “vent” about what they are not thankful for. Yes, that’s right.

After spending time with their families and being thankful for their many blessings, they discuss things in their lives they are not thankful for: college debt, certain laws, difficult people. 

They mention things that have gotten on their nerves over the past year.  As I said, I find it funny.

The “non-thankful” show is usually broadcast over Facebook live and I try to tune in every year just to see what they’ve come up with. Almost always, I agree with almost 90 percent of what they talk about.

So, I thought it might be funny this year to make my own list, just to vent a little and get things off my chest. I mean, you know how sweet I am and how non-judgmental and tolerant I usually am. Right?

At the top of my list would be the traffic coming down Edelweiss and off Route 3 in Columbia every morning during school hours. If you take students to the high school between 7:20 and 7:40 a.m., you will most likely see what I mean.

As expected, the traffic turning east on Edelweiss is a bit congested in the morning. So is the westbound traffic coming off Main.  Both long lines of cars are trying to turn into the high school parking lot. 

Somewhere along the line, someone created an unwritten rule that we would take turns turning into the high school. There is no light, no traffic policeman, and no sign that says to do this. Most people will say they are just being polite.

So, the congestion coming off Route 3 just gets worse. People take their polite turns, causing traffic issues coming from both directions.

If you see a curmudgeonly, ticked-off looking man with an embarrassed teenager in an older, somewhat beat-up pickup, that’s me. I have the right of way and I am taking my turn into the parking lot. I’m not abiding by the unwritten rule. I’m not adding to the traffic jam backing up onto Route 3. Sorry, ain’t doin’ it.

And there are many folks I have griped to about this who agree wholeheartedly with me. It’s always nice to have your gripes supported.

So, I am not thankful for that unwritten rule that someone created.  And I am not waiting my turn to take a right into the parking lot.  Heads up, drivers.

I am not thankful for needless discussion.  At this stage in my life, I’m at the “git er done” stage. 

I have been involved with groups of people who want to discuss something to death, go over mundane details, and still not resolve anything. My vote is to get a few representatives to see what the people want, make some decisions, and tell the rest of us what to do. And I won’t gripe about the decisions if that’s the best the committee can do.

I am not thankful that we can’t be real people and express our opinions these days. There is always someone ready to pounce or get aggravated at you.  

You can’t say where you stand politically and you can’t voice your opinion on the breakdown of the home or the fact the American male is becoming a downtrodden bunch (thanks to the jerks who have mistreated everyone and given us a bad name).

 I am not thankful for people who don’t own their fault. OK, so I’m still thankful for the person, just not the attitude. Folks, it’s your fault some of the time.  Own up to it, apologize, and give the other person some grace. I’m putting that in print so that I myself can do it more. We all need it.

I am not thankful for the attitude that it’s OK to be a day late and a dollar short. So many folks show up late, pay their bills late, and are just always late.  And they look around and wonder what everyone’s problem is. I mean, we all run late sometimes. But for it to happen over and over, it just seems disrespectful.  Not paying bills often results in other people not getting paid. Ever think about that?

I am not thankful that things we spend our hard-earned money on don’t last: appliances, automobiles, general stuff. This applies to service as well. People don’t give good customer service anymore – even though our patronage is paying their salary. 

 I won’t get started on restaurants and cleanliness because I’ve written about it too much.

Oh boy. This is hard to stop after you start it. 

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