Lee Wochner: Writer. Director. Writing instructor. Thinker about things.


Reminders to be thankful

If like me you had a perfectly pleasant Thanksgiving, it’s a good time to reflect on people who didn’t, and to remember how lucky we are most of the time.

  • I can’t imagine what Thanksgiving was like for this family in Utah, where one of three siblings died after being trapped upside-down in a cave for 28 hours. It’s difficult to think of a worse way to die, and I’m sure this is something that the whole family will live with for the rest of their lives.
  • Today when I picked up my car from the dealer, the rental-car guy and I rode through North Hollywood. I told him, as I tell at least one person every day, that one out of every eight people we see is out of work. And then I noticed all the boarded-up businesses. If you’ve got a job right now, this is something good to bear in mind.
  • And then a good friend called me today from out of town to tell me that her father had died on Tuesday.

Here’s how I spent my Thanksgiving:  The kids washed my wife’s van and my son’s car while I read the paper and supervised, then I gave the dog a bath while they supervised, then we took the dog for a long walk before going to the Smokehouse for dinner (it was okay). Then we came home and watched “Survivorman,” then a DVD, then we played two board games (Monopoly, then the electronic Doctor Who board game), then the younger kids went to bad, then the wife went to bed, then my eldest and I watched the movie “A.I.” until 2 a.m.  I shared all this with the rental guy. He told me that his girlfriend worked an afternoon shift at the hospital, so they celebrated Thanksgiving at 11 a.m., then he went to another Thanksgiving meal at 6 p.m. We agreed that, all things considered, we both felt lucky.

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