I probably say “Thank you” twenty times a day. To the driver who lets me into her lane. To the person who holds the elevator. To the lawn man, the dry cleaner, the customer service lady on the phone. I say “Thank you” even when I should be saying “You’re welcome.” “Thank you,” the barista at Starbucks says as I pay for my coffee. “No,” I say, “thank you.”
I’m a downright, out-of-control, thankophile.
Still, those are reflex thank-yous, mechanical, habitual reactions derived from social convention. But as we enter the waning days of autumn, the approach of Thanksgiving should cause all of us to reflect on more deliberate expressions of gratitude, and I, for one, have done just that. Accordingly, I offer herewith my thoughtfully considered thank you notes for Thanksgiving 2012:
Thank you, first, to President Obama. Mitt Romney thinks you won the election by tossing freebies to women, college students, African-Americans and Hispanics. Apparently, he never found out about all the gifts you lavished on us middle-aged, upper-middle-class Jews. The fresh bagels every Sunday morning (delivered to our homes!), the boxed sets of Woody Allen DVDs, the personalized letters of recommendation for our kids’ med school applications, the Bloomingdale’s gift certificates—thank you for all of them, and keep ‘em coming. Hell, throw in some fresh potato latkes for Chanukah and we’ll promote you to Messiah!
Thank you, next, to my 80-year-old mother. Thank you, Mom, for reminding me, on a daily basis (sometimes several times a day), that no matter how many trips the earth takes around the sun—no matter how much wisdom the years bequeath—no matter how many questions get asked and answered—you, my devoted mother, will never stop needing me to help you find the “Send” button on your Gmail account.
Thank you, earnestly, to my chiropractor’s massage therapist, Veronique. She knows why.
And, finally, thank you to my loyal Fresh Rhetoric subscribers. This blog is, admittedly, a hodge-podge of sorts, a melange, if you will, of the sometimes serious, sometimes satirical, sometimes literate, sometimes meandering ramblings of a frustrated, curmudgeonly wordsmith trying, through sentences and paragraphs, to make sense of the senseless. That you continue to read as I continue to write is at once humbling, daunting, and satisfying. So thank you, again, dear subscribers–all three of you.
Happy Thanksgiving, one and all! (And to anyone inclined to thank me for conveying these holiday wishes–no, thank you!)