My Thoughts

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It finally happened. The old guy enjoyed himself on a holiday.

For what has seemed like a lifetime, Insider has been forced to sit through miserable holiday dinners and special occasions. It’s a terrible time and it’s all because of family. Insider fully subscribes to the saying that says something along the lines of you can pick your friends, not your family. Insider’s family includes a bunch of miserable people who are no fun at all to be around. There’s a reason family only gets together a couple times a year. Nobody can stand each other. They never have been enjoyable to be around, and it’s getting to be more of a problem as the years go by. What makes matters even worse is the family seems as miserable to be around the old guy as he is to be with them. Misery loves company, right?

The best part of Insider’s holiday has traditionally been the nap he takes an hour or two after dinner and the quiet calm after the house empties out. Insider has been deemed the official greeter during family get togethers at the house. It’s not a great job as far as honey-do lists go, but it’s better than slaving away in the kitchen for 12 hours beforehand. Insider takes coats, shakes hands, gives hugs, feigns kisses, pats little people on the head and acts interested in what the arrivals have to say.

After the customary pleasantries are over with, Insider pushes them along toward the living rooms and hopes not to have to talk with them again until he’s putting their coats back on and wishing them safe trips home. All the while the old guy is acting like he has money on the football games on television so he can return acceptingly to his big chair and resume his football watching and smoking, which is a sure fire way to keep the women and kids out of the room.

The monotony of that tradition was dulled last week. This year was a different story because the various families within the overall family decided to do their own dinners at their respective houses in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area, Salisbury and Virginia Beach. Every family is made up of a bunch of little families, some of which, if you are lucky, live at points far and wide. Insider’s family is no different. This year, due to a variety of reasons, the individual families decided not to get together for one big 30-person dinner at some miserable soul’s house. Instead, at Insider’s dining room table this year, there were 10 people, and it was all immediate family members. The kids and their spouses and their kids. That was it. It was simple, enjoyable and the best Thanksgiving Insider can remember. Although the best part was still the 90-minute nap after the 3 p.m. feast, the other five hours were bearable and that’s something to be thankful for.

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