It’s Thanksgiving, this is a complicated holiday in the United States, while the premise is lovely, give thanks for what we have and the family that we have, but a year ago at Standing Rock Water Protectors were being sprayed with ice cold fire hoses, shot with rubber bullets, and threatened by the police force and drivers on the road. Some are still being prosecuted for protecting their land. There was just a massive oil spill, which is exactly what they were putting their lives on the line to prevent. As we eat our turkeys and we say what we are thankful for, we have to remember our history. Our history that dates back to the beginning of the country, and has not gotten any better over the years.
I always enjoyed Thanksgiving (not so much the romanticization of all the murder and the small pox) but the family part , I think a good portion of that is because I am a terrible cook therefore I did the things that didn’t involve my putting stuff into the oven. This year, it was quiet, we had Boston Market, I hung out with my parents, I got some much need napping in, despite the fact that I should have been a little more present . We felt some sadness that this was the first major holiday without my Grandmother, I definitely felt her absence, despite the fact that she’d be quite grumpy until all of the food was on the table. Holidays were kind of her thing, she made sure we were all taken care of, that when times were financially tight, she made sure everyone had gifts to open on Christmas, and a place at her table if need be. She didn’t always love hosting, but she made the best of it.
The older I get the more commodified Thanksgiving, and Christmas have become. We had people in our store all night. Sometimes commenting on how terrible it is we have to work (fun fact if no one ever shows up, odds are stores will remain closed, please don’t come out on holidays). I am proudly not a capitalist, I truly think that it’s a terribly exploitative, dangerous, and in the long term going continue to widen the gap between the CEOs and the people who work for them. Working different forms of retail have definitely taught me this lesson over and over again. Everything is about the bottom line, everything is “how much more can we push this”, everything is taking care of the higher-ups and the CEO’s and the shareholders before taking care of workers that actually keep the place running. It’s running us ragged. Workers are the most valuable aspect to a company. Without the “underlings” nothing would run.
So after all that kind of bleak analysis here are some things I am thankful for
1. Having a place to call home
5. Music, and my folk music family
6. The physical strength of my body
7. Hope. Beautiful paralyzing Hope.
10. Therapy =]