The Obligatory “What I’m Thankful For” Speech 2012

Last year, after reading Tyler Stanton’s “More Trivial Things I’m Thankful For” (he’s done it again this year), I wrote “The Obligatory ‘What I’m Thankful For’ Speech” (reposted Monday 11/21) where I talked about people saying they’re thankful for friends, family and all manner of “good” things and how I think that’s really disingenuous because what we’re really thankful for are things that are trivial, silly and utterly shallow.  I still feel that way and, once again, I want to talk about all the stupid, inane crap I’m actually thankful for.  Like:

  • The Raleigh Marriott at Crabtree Valley _ I have to workThanksgiving Day  (I’m a firefighter in real life) and these wonderful folks have graciously offered to prepare a lovely dinner for us.  Which means I don’t have to cook…, and that’s a good thing.
  • My Mother _ I thought I’d throw this one in while we were on the subject of food.  As I said last year, my mother is an awesome cook and Friday, I will sit down to the most wonderful Thanksgiving dinner you can imagine.  And, after preparing this repast myself a couple of years ago, I’m especially thankful that I don’t have to do it again.
  • My Kindle _ I absolutely love technology.  Computers, smart phones, mp3 players; the newer and more ridiculous the better in my opinion.  And, tops on my list these days is my Kindle e-reader.  I know some of you consider these things a tool of Satan because they are killing actual books and the brick and mortar bookstores that sell those dinosaurs, but you’re wrong.  Just the other day I bought the Complete Works of Edgar Allen Poe for 99 cents.   Did you hear me?  99 cents!  How can that be a bad thing?
  • That my grind and brew coffee pot bit the dust _ I know this one sounds weird due to the fact that last year, I had nothing but praise for this very item.  But, I have to say, because it gave up the ghost my coffee game has been raised exponentially.  I bought an electric kettle that boils water so fast it’s scary.  Using freshly ground coffee, I brew it in a french press and the results are absolutely amazing!
  • Candy at Carolina Coffee Roasting Company _ This young lady is a veritable life-saver.  She works at a small batch coffee roaster not far from my daughter’s home in Greensboro and she helped me find a coffee that won’t tear my stomach up after drinking a cup.  It doesn’t hurt that the coffee is so good it’s scary.  The downside is I can’t bring myself to drink cheap coffee anymore.  Small price to pay, though.
  • The Walking Dead _ Because this show on AMC may be some the best training material for the coming zombie apocalypse you’ll ever see.
  • Beer _ Because, to paraphrase Ben Franklin, beer “is constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy”.
  • Barbecue _ When I say barbecue, I mean real barbecue.  Not hamburgers and hot dogs or anything else you throw on the grill for a few minutes in the back yard.  I’m talking about a piece of meat slow-cooked all day over hardwood coals until it’s tender and smoky and delicious.  While my childhood favorite is Lexington-style (N.C.), I’m not picky.  Eastern N.C., upland South Carolina, Texas style beef brisket or Memphis dry rub ribs, it’s all good.
  • The Lonely Island _ Yes, I stole this one from Tyler and yes, I mean the comedy group made up of Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone.  You’ve probably seen their videos on SNL.  They’re crude, totally inappropriate and absolutely hilarious.  One of the reasons I’m thankful for these guys is without them, we may never have found out that Justin Timberlake is so damn funny.

Okay, that’s it for me.  What shallow, insipid, stupid stuff are you thankful for?