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Happy Thanksgiving To All, Even the Sonuvabitches

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Hey, Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!

I adapted this column off a Facebook post, and on there I admitted I usually write “Happy (insert holiday) to all good souls,” because I thought (and think) piece of shit sociopaths deserve karmic kicks in the teeth. So why didn’t I use that modifier, that sifting phrase this time?

Good question.

Possible reasons: I think EMDR works more than a bit…and also not watching fucking cable news helps, in that I’m not gravitating as much to “news” and fractious, divisive, bilious material of all kinds.

The day before Thanksgiving I chatted on Seventh Ave at 12th St, across from my all-time favorite diner, owned by my friends the Kostakas’ to a guy in the neighborhood who I’ve talked to over a span of 15 years. Him and his brother own a shop near the diner that I’ve had great luck with at. The brothers are ultra hard working, pillars of the community, and I try to buy whatever I can from them rather than encourage the excessively sweaty and sticky and successful mission creep of creepy Bezos.

After like 12 minutes of conversing, he said “I follow Jesus” while we were talking about the societal need to stop fucking fighting over dumb shit. We both agreed that allowing the agendas of cable news stations to seep like sewage into our daily lives is self destructive.

It was mildly awkward, because I did a beat, then stepped toward him and hugged him.. because maybe the moment called for it…

He was at that precise moment telling me about Benjamin Franklin and how Big Ben used some scorch earth tactics vs political and personal rivals. The shop owner, who would describe himself as moderate, neither MAGA nor an AOC groupie, informed me that ultimately it had all backfired, because Franklin’s son rebelled against dad’s sneaky policies.. and Ben Franklin died while him and the son were not talking to each other.

It was a battle, of who was more right…And it sounds like neither stubborn soul gave an inch.

Fill in the blanks from there.. Maybe think of all the divided families right now, who avoided on this holiday seeing relatives or friends because the level of contention in the country is near or at or surpassing an all-time high.

Can’t blame folks for steering away from potential unpleasantness, I don’t think.

But…

Could we all maybe snap a bit more into a “bridge-builder” mentality and POV, rather than sticking in the current default mode of engaging in minimal if any investigation prior to sharing a scabrous critique? And saying things with the bravery that comes with being way out of range, or maybe totally out of range, because messages delivered on and through social media platforms get negatively affected often by the detrimental messaging, of worshipping presentation and packaging, consuming, accumulating, pervading the site.

Perhaps right now I can be focusing on more positivity, I don’t have to wait until January 1 to start a campaign of re-setting. I’m sending notice, and therefore making myself accountable, that I seek to be putting more energy into building, not tearing down, on collaborating, because fuuuuck does this country (and world) need it.

Am I saying that ideally we can be aiming more so for accumulating serenity, empathy, work on building our souls, at the expense of paying attention to the (so often bad) news of the day? Nope—im picturing, though, of more of us existing in a flow where you are not as much focusing on what you can get, earn, or grind for..but more so looking for projects to take on that uplift the masses. But this isn’t a call to put a certain brand or size of blinder on, of surrendering to the rot that is cultivated by titans of soullessness? No. No Surrender.

Saying let’s all consider doing a mass re-set, to get our various societies in all sections of the nation into safer havens for mental, emotional and physical health doesn’t mean we look the other way on climate destruction. Or pretend or do search engine efforting on convincing ourselves that our alleged “exceptionalism” hasn’t come without unacknowledged downsides. To proceed with living while ignoring the toxic race bias tilt which encourages savagery as encapsulated by the Aubery murder, and the persistent presence of casual violence inflicted on dark skinned people, our nation’s disgracefully inappropriate personal firearm ownership construct is selling out the children to whom we’ve handed this shit sandwich of a world.

This is me giving a shout out in support of communities continuing to build locally, because it has to be conceded that our government doesn’t function by and for the people, the low key solid citizens who cause no problems, and are the foundations of their families. This is not me signaling a sly entry into a cowardly slide into resignation.

No, Thanksgiving night is an appropriate time to state it explicitly, proudly, even angrily, because it ain’t CLOSE to being acceptable, people’s seeming tolerance for the attempted coup attempt/theft of election play by a historically horrific office holder and other asleep at the wheel elites in leadership positions who fiddled while Covid burned the greatest nation in the world much more than should’ve been the case.  And the guy in office now could’ve done ten different things to lighten the load for everyday people, but hasn’t, and that has to be put out there, because we have to start being better about applying judgements, and law enforcement and standards every. No two sets of rules, and picking and choosing who has to follow rules and who doesn’t. That means looking under the floorboards and finding the truth, and punishing with deserved harshness bastards who ran with Epstein. Fuck all those bastards.

Seeking serenity bolstering and engaging with the harsh, and dark, and seemingly too much like a Stage 4 cancer realities of our day can co-exist.

We can acknowledge the difficulty of surviving during a savage pandemic, give ourselves a medal and a back part and then allot energy to shifting our mental frames away from the stress induced loop that often runs…in my head, anyway… like, of a health care system which allows insurance company efficiency specialists to refuse to pay for treatments that save lives of good souls who deserve a version of an economy guided with a quarter cup of conscience.

Serenity now! But with a push toward mass activism to help a nation adrift get pointed toward a better direction.

Complicated times, but most of them are, right?

So, Happy Thanksgiving to all, even the sonuvabitches, because who among us doesn’t now and again act like a fuckup? I sure do. It’s true. Let’s all push toward progress, less yelling at strangers on the Internet, more constructive activism into 2022. Also, stop looking down at your fucking phone so much. I’m going to work on that, too!

Go stuffing,

✌🏻🥊✌🏻

Editor/publisher Michael Woods became addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the fearsome Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist Woods has covered the sport since then, for ESPN The Magazine, ESPN.com, ESPN New York, RING, and he was editor of TheSweetScience.com from 2007-2015. Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and numerous other organizations.

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