Holiday reflections, or, annoying things that people say (an offshoot of “that’s the shit that got me mad”)
November 26, 2009
It’s Thanksgiving day, and I’m at work. I always wondered about the people that had to work on major holidays, and now I can finally truly empathize; it sucks. It did, however, get me thinking about annoying things that people say, both during the holidays and in normal conversation. And since I am often annoyed with others’ abuse of the English language, perhaps this will become a new regular segment of mine.
“Happy Turkey Day”
I thought I’d start off with what I consider to be the most annoying Thanksgiving-related phrase. Who are these morons that must find their “own” (as if they haven’t heard a million simpletons before them use this same phrase), idiotic and childish way to wish someone a Happy Thanksgiving? Seriously, I want to know so that I might line them all up and push them in front of a train (I recognize that I have some friends who may choose to employ this terminology. I’m not saying that you are stupid, just that the words that come out of your mouth are often stupid). While the consumption of turkey has somehow become synonymous with a Thanksgiving meal, many households across the continent, and, interestingly enough, in the Netherlands (yes, it is a holiday only celebrated in the Western World, you god-damned cultural imperialists) don’t even prepare turkey for the meal. In fact, evidence seems to suggest that the primary meat served at the “original” Thanksgiving meal between early European settlers (not necessarily even Puritans from England, but I digress) and Native Americans (I don’t have the energy today to get into the fact that our tainted historical understanding of Thanksgiving may actually be a celebration of mass slaughter and theft – the cartoon at the top will have to suffice) was, in fact, venison. So perhaps “Happy Deer Day” would be more historically accurate. For more myths about this holiday, check out George Mason University’s History News Network.
Beyond the fact that the phrase over-generalizes the eating habits of, literally, millions of people, it distracts us from the set of values that the evolution of the holiday was designed to espouse. The act of giving thanks should be a humbling, thought provoking process. Thanksgiving is a day to reflect on the favorable things that we have in our lives, to recognize how blessed so many of us are to have the love of family and friends. And, perhaps more importantly, to think positive, hopeful thoughts about those living around the world who don’t have the good fortune to spend a day with those they love. Replacing the portion of the phrase that actually gives meaning to this reflective process is so typically American that it makes me sick. Sure, some of you out there actually possess some modicum of compassion and appreciation for the people who help shape your happy little lives, but, sadly, most of you are simply imbeciles who would much rather celebrate an excuse to stuff your fat faces (as if obesity isn’t already one of the largest problems in this country). Instead of pouring gravy into your veins, try going for a jog or eating some vegetables (and no, those green beans you’re having aren’t healthy when you mix them with two pounds of bacon bits). Too often Thanksgiving is used as an excuse to overindulge, when, in my opinion, the spirit of the holiday should be the exact opposite. Embrace and give thanks for what you have EVERY day. Show that appreciation by going out to lend a helping hand to those who may not live life in the easy fashion that must of us take for granted every day. Instead of just giving thanks, why not take the next step and actually give? At the barest of bare minimums, have the courtesy and intelligence to reference the holiday in a way that still allows the derivation of some greater moral meaning. Give the day some substance (a substance greater than the amorphous blob that will surely be camped in your stomach for days to come). Saying “Happy Turkey Day” just makes you sound ignorant. And that’s the shit that gets me mad.