“What are you grateful for?”
On Thanksgiving, families and friends go around the table and answer that question.
At least, they do on TV. My family’s a little different.
We usually skip that part and say something like “Next year in Jerusalem!” because the crowd is identical to the people at our Passover table, and we forget where we are on the calendar.
Of course, now, gratitude isn’t just a holiday thing. It’s a “practice.”
Like yoga, or maybe like a law firm or doctor’s office.
I’m into gratitude, and I guess I practice it. However:
The form it takes in my head isn’t suited for the Thanksgiving table.
Though my gratitude thoughts help me ditch my repeating complaints and get all delighted with my life, they might be a buzzkill right before the turkey.
Why? I’m a little dark.
To love my ugly feet
When I’m pissed about my ugly feet, I think, What if my feet were both amputated due to an infection from a dirty nail salon, and my legs ended in cankle stumps? And then a doctor said, there’s a new drug that will grow your feet back, but they’ll be flat, Fred-Flintstone looking feet that turn all kinds of colors when you’re wearing heels. Essentially, we can give you back the feet you had before. I’d be so thrilled. And that’s how I get happy about the feet I have.
To love my body
When I’m pissed that my body isn’t “rock and roll” enough, and wish I had skinny stick legs and small, high boobs that could even go braless, I think how great it is that I don’t have that fungal disease that turns you into a tree person. It’s very rare, I think only in Thailand. Don’t google “tree person” if you don’t want to be haunted by the pictures for the rest of your life. People really become trees, and not pretty trees, either. Trees with messed up bark, that look like they need to be chopped down.
That thought makes me so happy my body is what it is and not covered in bark.
Here’s another thing that makes me grateful for my body as is. Ready?
There’s no such thing as a lady scrotum, so this would never happen, but: I always feel for the guy who got his own show on A&E because his scrotum is so big, he has to haul it around in a shopping cart. He wasn’t born like that. He got hit in the groin one day, and the next morning, BOOM. His scrotum is its own planet. With life on it, no doubt, because it’s hard to wash.
Side note – instead of a reality show, it should’ve been a sitcom, or a cop show like “Scrotum and the Bear.”
Have you ever given gratitude for not having a 250-lb scrotum? Try it, it’s a mindset shift.
To love my apartment
I already do love my apartment. But you know, there are those days when what you have just isn’t enough enough. When I think our apartment is too small, or I’m bummed that it’s the one line in the building that doesn’t have a terrace (I know, boo-hoo), I think about an apocalyptic situation where all the apartments are destroyed and all New Yorkers are in a shantytown called District X, and have to poop in spaghetti pots. In that fantasy, I’m dreaming wistfully about the perfect dwelling structure we used to have. Boom.
To love flying in coach
When I’m squeezed between a linebacker who hogs the armrest and a lady who wants to show me all the photos of her trip, each one featuring a stuffed rabbit doll she calls “Funny Bunny” in front of a landmark (Like I’m two. “And here’s Funny Bunny in front of the Met. Funny Bunny loves art!” ) and I’m cursing my fate that Business Class is such a significant price jump relative to my income, a disaster fantasy comes in handy:
I think, what if the world were about to be destroyed, and the only way to save yourself was to get on this airplane?
There’s only room for like 300 people sitting, and then others would have to cram in and stand. Who cares about legroom and arm rests and warm nuts? I’d be so grateful to have a seat, period!
That is, as long as the people I love were on the plane, too. If not, forget it. I want to go down with them.
And then I think, yay! The people I love are alive and mostly well, and –also mostly –available by phone or email! And the world isn’t being destroyed this week, at least not that I know. (I should read the paper more.)
OK, this one doesn’t work as well as I’d like it to.
Let’s face it, flying coach sucks a big, limp, hairy one no matter how you look at it, and being there for over 2 hours makes you kind of wish the world would get blown up.
But as for the rest, it works for me.
Not great table talk, but effective.
Is your gratitude inappropriate for the table?
What else can you tell me?
What’s your favorite Thanksgiving side dish?
TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS.