It’s The Most Bipolar Month Of The Year.
Poor November. Of all the months of the year, November’s the most confused. It doesn’t get October’s autumn hype or December’s Christmas buzz. November’s the forgotten middle child, typically stuffed with personal goal-oriented events like NaNoWriMo and Novembeard, trying desperately to get a little attention from its parents.
Yep. An entire month dedicated to the growth of crumb catchers.
And while in the U.S. it’s peppered with a couple of pretty notorious national holidays like Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving, the solemnity of these days is often overridden by a little something I like to call hypocrisy.
IRONY: The fact that people spend the month of November posting daily Facebook status updates about what they’re grateful for already having, only to trample each other on the day after Thanksgiving to buy a bunch of things they don’t need.
Let that one sink in for a minute, because we’ve all probably been guilty of something similar at one time or another.
It’s like a massive month of pre-penitence for the unflattering behavior people know they’ll exude on the 29th.
On the 1st, they’re grateful for their families. On the 5th, their friends. On the 13th, their health, and the 18th, their homes. By the time the 22nd rolls around, they’ve whittled it down to The Walking Dead and Velveeta cheese and the crumpled dollar bill they discovered in their pants pocket that morning. And don’t get me wrong — gratitude is phenomenal. In fact, waking up every morning with gratitude for anything — big or small — is a beautiful way to start a day. And there’s nothing wrong with announcing it on Facebook, either. We could use some positivity up in that land o’ constant complaints. But then Black Friday rolls around, and it’s like everyone’s forgotten that they’re very content with what they already have and all humility gets thrown out the window as people come home with armloads of clothing and appliances and electronics.
In a sense, the entire meaning invoked on the month is wiped clean in one — or several — fell swoops of the Visa card.
And think about it. Is a killer deal on a flat screen television really worth dragging yourself out of a tryptophan-induced dreamworld in the middle of the night to go stand in line outside some big box store, the CEO’s of which are snuggled warm in their beds with visions of the Christmas bonus you’re about to earn them dancing in their heads?
Okay, for some of you it probably is. No judgement. I suppose it’s unrealistic to think I could start a massive Black Friday boycott with one little blog post.
But for me, my sleep is worth the money I’d save. And besides, Cyber Monday is where it’s at — high intensity gift shopping from the comfort of my own home office. In our house, Black Friday is usually for leftovers and hangovers and move over, you’re hogging the sofa.
Except this year. This year, Black Friday will take on a very different meaning. It’s the last day we’ll be allowed to occupy the home we’ve lived in for the last 6 1/2 years.
And I think it hasn’t fully hit me yet because we haven’t actually packed anything, and there’s been a looming contractual uncertainty about the home we think we’re moving to in Virginia, the dirty details of which I’ll delve into once we’re actually settled in and are quite positive that come December, we’ll be expressing gratitude for the fact that we actually have a place to call home. In fact, I have quite a few plans for posts I want to write after we move, but in the meantime I’m stuck in this limbo of distraction — instead of wondering what dish I’ll bring to a Thanksgiving gathering with friends and family, I’m wondering if we’ll even be going to a Thanksgiving gathering with friends and family, or if we’ll be stuck eating ham sandwiches on an air mattress in an otherwise empty house.
Uncertainty and I? We don’t get along. She makes me break out and dream anxiety-riddled dreams and temporarily forget about the fact that I do, indeed, have a whole lot to be thankful for.
Like mayonnaise on ham sandwiches. And self-inflating air mattresses.
And especially online shopping.
What are you thankful for this year?