Thursday, November 24, 2011


It's Thanksgiving, and in a few hours Mr. and I will be joining first his parents, then my parents, for a Thanksgiving meal. Yes, you read that right: Two Thanksgivings. The trick is small bites -- very, very small bites, and reminding myself that even though what I'm eating right now is so very scrumdiddlyumptious delicious, I SHALL NOT GET SECONDS, or else. Or else the night ends in me hating myself, my stomach waging full-blown overstuffed war on the rest of my body. Having made it through four of these already, I am confident in my ability to avoid such an unpleasant fate -- but I had to suffer through the first two to learn.

Which brings me to today's topic: Thankfulness. I'm running a little further with the 'blessings' idea today, trying to take a realistic look at all the good stuff I've got going on in my life that I generally take for granted, or at least don't think about all that often. Which is to say: I still don't have a job -- but things could be worse!

Ah yes, I could indeed be an artist.
I first saw this painting in The Artist's Guide by Jackie Battenfield, a professional self-help manual for artists. The painting is by Jim Torok, who is, of course, an artist. Entirely non-P.C., Torok's piece is a great reminder for me to find humor in the stereotypes that surround my chosen profession, as well as being a harshly truthful reality check. No matter how many problems I'm having or how concerned I may feel about the future, things are really not that bad -- let's title this version of thankfulness (NOTE: The following link is probably, unless your office is super chill, NSFW.) "Schadenfruede."

Yes, Schadenfruede - the very emotion I will be feeling tonight if I look across the table and see Mr. wallowing after too many scoops of stuffing, mashed potatoes, and those yummy crescent rolls sold by the Pillsbury Dough Boy - happiness in recognizing that he is far worse off than me. Yet behind the Schadenfruede will be a true Thankfulness; a thankfulness that we have so much food we can stuff ourselves into oblivion, that I am not alone in my journey, and that as bad as things might look right now, I really do have an awful lot going for me. Happy Turkey Day, everybody!

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