Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Tome for the Holidays

The storms have come and gone, society is rebuilding and here in Florida we are recovering. The looks of shock and loss are fading from the faces of the overwhelmed citizenry here in Florida after one of the worst seasons in history. And yet, now that the press has gone and things are going back to normal, people are continuing with their lives, the elections won't return for another four years leaving us in peace again. Oh yeah, we're rebuilding from the hurricanes too. Amazing, despite four storms (five actually, but only four really caused us problems) and damage that was repeatedly visited upon the same, poor victims as well as many others, the press and even locals that hadn't lost their homes focused on the elections. And while this holiday season has many, many people who are truly blessed with life, family and friends despite their neighborhood being blown away, the Democratic faithful are still too busy fuming to be concerned with their fellow man.

While I could use the expression finger pointing, I would have to use the caveat that the finger was pointing straight up at the end of an arm at full extension while the driver was roaring away at high speed. Yeah, that finger. Seems to be a popular sport on the roadways this holiday season. Roar up upon someone at a high rate of speed, then give them a bird for daring to be there on your roadway. You couldn't see them ahead of you as you were doing touch and go's down the interstate? Just go around them? Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you too. The traffic here in the Tampa area really isn't that bad yet, but already, with the influx of people moving into the area (I'm one of the recent imports myself) there are the people who are so important that they rail against those others between them and their banal emergencies. If you're that important, why are you driving yourself? Shouldn't you be in the back of a limo while your driver sweats the traffic? Or surrounded by a motorcade? If you're driving yourself or driving a car less than, oh, say $150K, how important can you really be? Once I've gotten more involved in my new community, I'll have some limited importance to the peoples lives that I'll be able to improve through my service. But, I'll not be as important as the guy driving the ambulance to the hospital with someone's life at stake in back. Nor the fire men responding to a fire or other emergency where their knowledge and service are required. Nor the teacher on their way to encourage young minds. I work for a large corporation, people there value my skills, yet, I don't consider myself so important that I need to roar up and down the interstate, cursing and swearing at people for daring to slow me in my pursuits.

I'll be the guy holding the elevator for you. Offering to help you carry something, letting you into traffic or offering you my seat when you look like you need it. Not a saint, nor even close to always being a nice guy. But I try, regularly. Making the world a better place in as many little ways as I can, as often as I can. Living life and enjoying it as best I can and trying to help others do the same.

The children are coming out to visit for Christmas. It'll be good to see them again. They are witty, mostly charming and young. Old enough to be in college, one finishing up grad work and the other in the middle of undergrad work. Still, young. They really haven't seen a lot yet, not on their own. Fortunately, for a great deal of their lives they were traveling around the world as military dependents. Living and seeing different cultures and people. They know that there is a great, big world out there with people whose culture, language and ideas are not like theirs. They also know that that is okay, part of what makes the world a great place to be. They also know that there are people out there for whom no amount of time outs are going to cure them nor deter them from their ways. So, we'll gather together as family, enjoy each others company and the fact that we can gather, free from want for the basic necessities.

Whether you celebrate this as the secular spendfest known as the "Holiday Season", a more traditional Judeo/Christian holiday or celebrate none but are around some of us Americans that do, have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. I hope that you and yours have good times with family and friends. Spread the cheer and fellowship even if for a few days. It won't kill you.

As for me, while there may be some debate on the issue the feeling remains the same. Happy Birthday Jesus.

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