I didn’t drink at the dinner because I was driving... but I’m back home and it was, to say the least... a weird experience.
I mean.... what is Thanksgiving but an excuse to celebrate something? Celebrate abundance, celebrate family, or celebrate yourself. I don’t think thanksgiving is about what happened with the Native Americans oh-so many years ago...
I think it’s just a wake up call to realize what surrounds you.... This exceptional wealth of knowledge and love, the ridiculous amount of abundance and excess that we feel entitled to as humans.
So why the hell not cook an entire bird and partake in the humbling act of analyzing your day to day situation and finding something you like about it. It’s a fantastic celebration of ourselves and... personally, I think it’s great.. much more humane and reflective than the Christmas diners we we usually have here.
A thanksgiving diner isn’t about opulence, it’s merely about what we consider an excess and why we’re thankful for the chance to have it, it’s trying to be humble in a way and recognize what let us have the excess. Even if the food takes center stage, we can’t hide that it’s mostly about human interaction. So I enjoyed it... a lot. Even if I had a moment of weirdness in the middle.
You see, I was invited to the dinner by the host’s daughter.. The host must be in her late fifties and most of her guests were so too, so we were sat in the “kids” table, which is almost universally the superior table in any large dinner party. We, three twenty year olds, were sat with one sixteen year old and three eighteen year olds. The conversations went ahead great until one of the 18 year olds said she “was a mess” So I asked her what she meant.
As any 18-year old would, she deflected “Because I find messes beautiful” She said. I think that’s a bullshit answer... So I said to her “Come on, why do you consider yourself a mess, don’t give me those pinteresty-crappy quotes”
She just said that she was tired of fighting with her surrounding and that she just existed and that “having no responsibilities” made her happy. She said “I cherish not having to look up to anything”
All the 20 year olds looked at her...
“But how can you like being a mess... I can’t imagine anyone wo-”
She cut me off and responded.
“Well, how you think it’s non of my business, maybe you have a very ‘ordered’ brain but I have a messy brain and I like it as it is” She answered.
The rest of the conversation was kind of me trying to ask why she wanted to be a mess and she deflecting by saying I was a square so I wouldn’t get it and that order doesn’t work for everyone.
Which, between us, is bullshit. Order is what binds our lives together... the more order we have, the less we have to worry about and the freer we are. But anyway.
I told her about an important moment between me and my father... He said to me “Be wary of mental jerkoffs.” What he meant with that was that we cannot let our minds trick us into thinking everything is OK during an adverse situation. A mental jerkoff is telling yourself that you don’t need to change because not changing is comforting in the moment of panic.... But because of their nature mental jerkoffs only become worse.... We lie to ourselves constantly to avoid changing a problematic pattern because it’s more comforting than trying to change.
To that she said “Cool story, bro, but my brain doesn’t work like that”
After that I was pulled out of the table by my friends, we went to the kitchen and one of them wanted to shout at the 18 year old girl for being so impolite. But I think I get it now.
I am just like her... I am a dick trying to impose an authority that I very probably do not possess. what makes me the one that can talk to her about anything? Why would it matter that the worst moments of my life were those with the least order, or my father’s lesson?
Perhaps it’s what I should be thankful for..... for perception. I need to perceive myself being an idiot and curb it.... or else what am I? Would it be a mental jerkoff to pretend I’m better than her? Humility, it seems, is what I should be seeking, rather than authority because humility emphasizes self critique and a keener observation of our surroundings, which are ultimately the greatest ability of humanity: Observation and analysis. Maybe I didn’t agree with her... but I tried to listen, because I’m convinced that if I didn’t...I’d be worse than how I perceive her.
SO yeah, I’m thankful for perception. The ability to become aware that I so desperately lack at times.