Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
I think Thanksgiving is one of my favorite "days". (Odd, isn't it, this need we have to order things according to Earth's trips around the sun? What would we do if a year was ten times as long? Anyway.) I have a lot to be thankful for, but I don't often stop and smell the roses. I'm kind of a "glass half empty" kind of person, almost like noticing the glass is also half full would jinx things, and cause the glass to empty completely. Thanksgiving gives me permission to concentrate on the full half of the glass, and maybe even to find that the glass is more than half full.
I have to start with my wonderful wife, Shirley. (I don't like the word "wife". It is such a crappy sounding word for such a wonderful thing. Why don't we have a beautiful, melodic, inspiring -sounding word for this concept? (Like "concubine".) Or something. Anyway.) Shirley is not only a huge part of the full part of the glass, she is also the reason for other big parts of the fullness, my kids. All of them are wonderful, amazing people - and you couldn't find more different people, amazingly, although they are all women - and I am very thankful for them. And they, together, are responsible for another big part of the fullness of my glass, my life at home. Which is wonderful. Most of the time. Certainly more than half of the time. Especially right now, with my little dogs chasing my cat up the stairs :)
And then there is my work. (I don't like the word "work". It is such a stark, bare, unexpressive word for such a wonderful thing. Why don't we have a noble, full, inspiring -sounding word for this concept? (Like "endeavor".) Or something. Anyway.) I am fortunate to live at a time when the intellectual effort of teaching machines to do stuff is valued. And I am especially fortunate that the particular machines I am teaching to do stuff are helping us in such valuable ways. I get up in the morning knowing that what I need to do that day matters. And that is something for which I am very thankful.
And it is a beautiful day. Bright and sunny, crisp. As I sit here watching Tivo-ed football, typing on my laptop, a glance out the window calls me. A bike ride is indicated, I think. The exposure to the outside world will be good, and the exercise will be good, too, helpful in anticipation of serious food consumption ahead. Now that is something to be thankful for...
My glass is actually overflowing.