Some things just don't sit well with me.

I was shopping at one of the big box stores on Nov. 1 where Bing Crosby's "White Christmas" and other holiday tunes were already being played. Come on, you greedy retailers, can't you at least wait until after Thanksgiving to promote your crass commercialism?

Thank God for Thanksgiving, the poor stepsister of the holidays but one where no one is grabbing for your wallet. It's just an untarnished family holiday. I'm a sucker for the Norman Rockwell portrayal of Americana, especially Thanksgiving. We even have his famous Thanksgiving dinner portrait over our dining room table. Corny, I know, but I like it.

This time of year reminds us to be thankful for our many blessings. I'm thankful to be living in the 21st century. I can't imagine a life without electricity, telephones, microwaves and air conditioning. I'm thankful my ancestors crossed the turbulent Atlantic Ocean, tamed a wild and rugged North America and established the foundations of this great country.

I'm certain I would not have survived in the Old World. The thought of hunting for my own food gives me a permanent shudder. Not to mention skinning rabbits and deer and roasting them on a spit (what's a spit?). I'm sure starvation would have been my destiny. Thank God for supermarkets!

Not to mention the awful drudgery of dusty and frightful wagon trains, cramped dirt floor log cabins, and the overall stench of living without a daily shower. Thank God for indoor plumbing!

I guess I'm a thoroughly modern wimp!

On a more serious note — yes, even I can be serious — I've had a wonderful life sprinkled with magic memories and incredible friends that I still hang with after 50 years. I have been blessed with a career that I truly loved as a teacher at La Porte High School. It warms my heart that so many of my former students still greet me around town with genuine affection.

I am also thankful to you who read my little column. Your kind emails and hearty greetings are very much appreciated. I'm thankful for my good health and most of all for my family. I have a wife who has had my back for 35 years. She has stood by me and never lost faith, especially in the trying early years.

This Thanksgiving, my brother and his family will join us for another raucous Thanksgiving dinner. There will be plenty to eat and many horse laughs. Hardly a Norman Rockwell depiction, but a loving group just the same.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Contact Blaine Heric at

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