For non-native New Englanders, Patriots’ Day commemorates the battles of Lexington and Concord during the Revolutionary War. The civic holiday is celebrated in Massachusetts and Maine, and is always celebrated on the third Monday in April.
If this sounds like a totally BS holiday to you, that’s because it is. It also happens to be the day that the Boston Marathon is run – so to many locals it’s known merely as Marathon Monday. Whatever you want to call it, it’s merely an excuse for Bostonians to drink on a Monday.
Valentine’s Day is a rough day for anyone out there who is single. Trust me, I know. I’ve been there; and she’s a relentless b*tch. If it helps, remember that couples are boring and gross and will be waiting to sit down to dinner at a restaurant they’ve either already been to or are going to spend way too much money on for a crappy Valentine’s Day menu. Yes, I can still look through the haze that overcomes couples and both sympathize and empathize with all the single people out there. After all, this is still a holiday conjured up by Hallmark and Hershey’s… and maybe DeBeers.
So single ladies, get out there and find Mr Right Now… because you best not be looking for Mr Right on Valentine’s Day.
We as human beings are intrinsically priceless, and it’s the unfortunate ones who don’t see our inherent worth. We are here to choose, not to be chosen, and only those who see our true inherent worth should be given the opportunity.
It’s not long until midnight, until 2013 officially begins and 2012 becomes yet another year for the history books. For some reason, starting with what I wrote a year ago in anticipation of the promise held by 2012 seemed to be the only appropriate way to look back on the year. I ended last year’s NYE post with the words above… and I have to admit that message rang true this year.
2012 started with an emotionally bruised and battered me, rushing off and running away to the Caribbean for some serious heart mending and soul searching, and that trip to Barbados was the perfect beginning to a roller coaster year – but one of mainly ups. True, this heart would have mended even without that trip to Barbados. However, the pain and heartache would have lasted much longer; the strength and confidence to carry on may never have reached their summit. The inner peace would have been a long time coming without that long walk on the beach under full moonlight.
But I came back from the Caribbean looking not backward, but forward. Though this blog was started many years ago, I took a renewed interest and a different focus in February. The rest of the year was spent much the same way. Looking ahead for challenges and opportunities, truly taking many of the “30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself” to heart. I learned not to make the same mistakes as I did in 2011. I learned to be a little more selfish, to not let my past relationships get in my way, and to not get into relationships for the wrong reasons. Jumped head first into school/work and took some chances that turned out to be great ideas in the long run.
Somehow I managed to do all of the things I worried about when I worried about turning thirty. I’d like to think this year successfully balanced the competing desires to be successful, start a relationship, and keep up with friends – all while taking care of and not losing my own sense of self. I’m not trying to sound self aggrandizing here. These are, in fact, the same lessons I’ve posted on this blog every day this month. This past year is merely a testament to putting them into place, and New Year’s Eve is a call to action. NYE is a moment to reflect, learn, move forward and do.
I don’t quite know exactly what 2013 has in store. There will be some big things for sure – finishing my MPH, returning to surgical residency. A trip back to the Caribbean in January – although this time not for soul searching in Barbados, but for helping those in need in Haiti. The remainder of it is unplanned, and the uncertainty of it all almost doesn’t matter. Because whatever it is, I got this – and if I cant do it alone, I know there are people to whom I can turn for help. But I do know one thing for certain. This year when the clock strikes midnight and the crystal ball in Times Square reaches the number 2013, I know exactly where I’ll be. I’ll be standing next to and holding onto the one I chose… and the one who chose me. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Happy New Year everyone. Reflect on the good and the bad from this past year. And then look forward, go out, and make something of the new year.
A friend of mine posted on Facebook the other day asking what song people thought was the most annoying Christmas/holiday song. There were definitely some good responses although some people put down the song they find the most depressing around the holidays rather than the most annoying. I had one very clear vote…
Christmas is 11 days away after all (holy crap, seriously!?) So here goes… which song is your favorite Christmas song? If you come from a religious tradition – is there a religious Christmas song you really like in addition to secular ones? And which Christmas song makes you want to claw your eyes out?My favorite religious Christmas songs:
- O Come, O Come Emanuel (technically an Advent song… I know)
- Oh Come All Ye Faithful (Celine Dion version)
- Oh Little Town of Bethlehem (Amy Grant version)
- O Holy Night (Jewel does a really good version as does the Cast of Glee)
- Silent Night (there are numerous artists who do this song justice, and instrumental versions tend to be beautiful as well)
- Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (Christina Aguilera version – I wont be judged!)
- Baby, It’s Cold Outside
- Cold December Night
- Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer
Well the holiday season is officially here in the United States with the craziness that was Black Friday and Cyber Monday already come and gone. And with the holiday season comes many of winter’s best attributes – hot chocolate, Christmas, the smell of pine trees…
But the holiday season also carries a little baggage in the form of the Salvation Army with their “army” of bell ringers and red kettles. And my disapproval for the Salvation Army is not solely because I find the bell ringers annoying.
For those of you who don’t know, the Salvation Army actively discriminates against gays and lesbians. While you might think you’re helping the hungry and homeless by dropping a few dollars in the bright red buckets, not everyone can share in those donations. The organization also has a record of actively lobbying governments worldwide for anti-gay policies.
I will never understand how charities that report to come from a background of strong Christian beliefs choose to actively discriminate and deny charitable services to others simply due to differences in beliefs (I’m pretty sure Jesus said love thy neighbor – not love thy neighbor if he or she believes the same thing as you). But I want to point out an idea that I thought was fairly interesting in order to show support for the LGBT community.
America Blog is asking LGBT shoppers and allies to give downloadable “vouchers” to Salvation Army bell ringers in lieu of cash in an effort to let the organization know that “bigotry is not a Christmas value”. You can print out the vouchers below. I think this idea is unique and worthwhile. Do I think it will change the Salvation Army’s position on homosexuality? Absolutely not – but it cant hurt right?
First of all – Happy Thanksgiving!
Last year I posted on Thanksgiving about how amazing I thought it was that the American people reserved an entire day for recognizing the valuable role of family and respecting the day to give thanks. And then Target and many other companies decided to encroach on the holiday by opening for Black Friday earlier than ever. Oh well… so much for not commercializing Thanksgiving.
This year, I’m thankful for many things including my wonderful family. I’m also grateful to the amazing group of friends that I have and to the best friends a guy could ask for. I’m thankful for the opportunity to live in a country where I am free to shape my own career and for the men and women who have kept this country safe. I’m thankful for good health.
So it begs the question… what are you thankful for?
Last year, Target stunned the American public when they were the first company to announce they would be opening at midnight on Thanksgiving Day. Many people claimed that the company was cutting into the time for employees to spend with their families and to enjoy the tradition of Thanksgiving. Despite the small outcry, Target stores opened at midnight across the nation (except for Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Maine, which dont allow retailers to open on holidays).
Well this year, Target and several other stores have upped the ante… and may are claiming that these retailers are creeping in on Thanksgiving. Target, Walmart, Sears, Kmart, and Toys R Us are opening their stores at 9pm this year. And some of their employees arent too happy about it. Interestingly, some of the companies have announced that even though they are opening early, presumably to draw in customers, their Black Friday specials wont begin until after midnight.
Several petitions have popped up on Change.org to “Stop Black Thursday”, claiming that retailers are putting revenues ahead of families. And after all, isnt that what the holidays are about? Then again, look around any super store or shopping mall and you’ll notice that it looks like Christmas vomited all over the place. Is this just the next logical step for retailers to take? And how will the American public respond?
So what you think, should retailers open earlier on Thanksgiving Day? And should employees be allowed to bow out in order to spend time with their families.
For more info, there’s a decent CNN article that you can find here about “Black Thursday”.