2009-12-04 / Letters

What Happened To Thanksgiving?

Dear Editor,

I've been sitting here, like most people, getting bombarded with advertisements and commercials telling me that I need to shop till I drop, and save money shopping at certain stores. Apparently, this will improve the quality of my life, or make everyone in my life much happier. It is 10 days before Thanksgiving! Fast forward, it's the day after Thanksgiving, Oh I'm sorry, its been changed by the media to "BLACK FRIDAY", and instead of getting the news, I'm getting live coverage of the lines at certain malls in the Tri-state area. I can't even savor yesterday's meal, or be up set with the way the Giants got pounded because all I saw at every whistle was commercials to go Christmas shopping, with some stores being opened as I ate my turkey.

Let me take you back to what now seems like such a better way to celebrate THANKSGIVING, which by the way, is one of the few remaining AMERICAN holidays left. Coming from a large family, Thanksgiving was always about FAMILY, FOOD, FOOTBALL, and most important, GIVING THANKS for our good fortune, be it health, wealth, or the seemingly lost fact that our family was living the American Dream! It's the one day a year you could get away with a little more mischief, (usu ally blaming a cousin if you were caught) and eat as much of anything you could get your hands on. It was the day you could see family that you might only see maybe a few times a year. You could compete with your cousins, and try to impress your aunts and uncles. And usually, your favorite cousins could stay for a sleep over, and one more day of mischief. The most indelible memory I have of all the Thanksgivings past was the part when we sat down to eat, and every member of the family got to stand up and say what they were thankful for. Obviously this was always met with some laughs, some tears, but it gave all of us who could speak, a platform, and a great prelude to the family prayer. It's the one time a year when I felt most connected, and most grateful to have a big family. I don't recall if they even had commercials for Christmas so early back then, and if they did I was oblivious to them because I was too busy enjoying Thanksgiving.

In these times of recession, war, and unemployment, with people strug gling to get by, how can we NOT enjoy Thanksgiving the way it was intended. I'm going to take this time to be grateful for my wife beating cancer, my son taking advantage of Letters college, my families' health, my wife's beautiful new grandson and OUR TROOPS. May God bless them ALL!

P.S. Does anyone have the number of dollars spent on advertising for Christmas, between November 15 and December 15? I'm sure that money alone would help keep companies in the "Black".

PAUL MASTROS

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