We are a day out from the great and uniquely American holiday, Thanksgiving. We have traditionally gathered. These days it’s one daughter who does the family thing, being the place we all migrate for limited conversations~ because who can discuss politics or just about anything~ complain about the fact that Christmas decorations are in the stores and truly just enjoy the small ones!
Thanksgiving originated as a harvest festival. It has been celebrated nationally on and off since 1789, after Congress requested a proclamation by George Washington. Now it is the fourth Thursday of the month when we gather around a huge roasted bird with side dishes ranging from from dressing-or stuffing, if you prefer, cranberry sauce [jelled or full of whole cranberries] potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes! candied please. Yep. a very unique, great, stressed-filled one of a kind holiday. My favorite has always been cranberries with candied sweet potatoes coming in a very, very close second.
But no. What I want to talk about is ‘giving thanks’. Do you give thanks? ‘Thank you’ when someone holds the door for you? Or ‘thank you’ when you are handed change? Or thank you when you are waved through a four-way stop? I do. It’s not a reflex. I mean it.
But do I get, ‘you’re welcome’ back? Usually, no. I don’t. What I get is ‘no problem.’ What exactly does that mean? It wasn’t a problem for you to hold the door? It wasn’t a problem for you to hand me my change? Lordy, it was your job! Maybe the person says ‘no problem’ when waving me through a four way stop.
The proper phrase is you are welcome. The no problem response seems sort of lost in translation. A bit casual. An off the cuff response. An over a shoulder comment that is more perfunctory than real. It is more like I have not inconvenienced the person I thanked. Again, for the most part it’s their job!
Okay, a bit more cranky than I should. Time for the grateful list. T
- Tom, while his health is good, he is facing challenges. I’m grateful that during the time he worked he made sure we were financially secure.
- Meghan, Greg and, of course, Emmeline.
- Bayley, Dan and, of course Mia.