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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgivings 2007

Today is the American holiday of Thanksgiving.

Despite claims to the contrary, the autumn feast of Thanksgiving is not an American invention. Here in Britain, there are Harvest Festivals, to which people bring song and drink and pot luck food items and rain gear. These are generally associated with a local church, as they were no doubt associated with celtic religious sites before the Christianization of Britain 1500+ years ago. But the American Thanksgiving holiday is special in that it invites celebrants to enter a state of gratitude and contemplation while avoiding any sectarian affiliation - a doubly remarkable feat when you consider that its historical root is the anniversary of a feast by a conservative Protestant sect (derogatorily called the "Puritans").

Also, in addition to feasting, Americans also get to watch spectacular marching processions and gladiatorial competitions on Thanksgiving recalling America's cultural debt to Ancient Rome. And who doesn't love a parade? Not to mention armored combatants charging at each other?

Me, I live in England now, where a Protestant hasn't been burned at the stake for over 50 years. My family and I came to England from America last year - not to seek religious freedom or escape persecution. No, that would be absurd. We came to the shores of England because ... because ... You know, I have no idea. I think we were "searching" for "something". In any event, we're here now. Here in England. That's the point I could be trying to make.

Who knows, though? Next year we could be in France. And then Switzerland the year after. Then Austria. Then ... As a matter of fact, we could just keep travelling east, a new country every year, until we hit the Pacific Ocean in our search for the freedom to be you and me. By the time we get to China it could be a happenin' place. They might even have disco dancing. 

But why stop at China? How about Maui?! I love Maui.

The point I'm trying to make is that the world is round. And also that I give thanks for the fact that I hold multiple passports. If things get really bad, we have all of Europe ahead of us.

And if things get really, really, really bad ...

... it's eastward to L.A. !!!

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Nice piece. I look forward to your travelogues -- in the UK and abroad.

- By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sat Nov 24, 01:07:00 PM GMT  

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