On a windy Saturday at the Oro Valley Farmers Market, a shopper suggested the breeze might be a good thing, because it’ll chase the bicyclists out of town. Saturday, of course, was El Tour, with thousands of people pedaling through the Northwest.

El Tour happens but one day a year, and yet this gentleman was complaining about its presence.

Perspective, sir. Something to embrace this Thanksgiving holiday.

Life is a struggle. We face bills, threats to income, a drab economy, health concerns, bicyclists … every day, something.

Yet it is a precious, sweet sip, this life, far too brief, and something for which we should all be thankful.

If you’re reading this … thank you, first of all. If you’re reading this, you’re alive, enjoying this greatest, most fleeting gift. You’ve got eyes that see and a brain that works. You’re in the comfort of your home, with loved ones near, in your thoughts or on the phone. All worth celebrating. The wind, the cyclists, job security … secondary concerns.

Tony Snow, the late journalist and spokesman for President Bush who died of cancer, had the quote worth repeating every year. He said: “If you think Independence Day is America’s defining holiday, think again. Thanksgiving deserves that title, hands-down.”

It’s true, every year. How fortunate are we to live in a country where the truly biggest questions for nearly everyone on Thanksgiving Day are how to bake the bird, whether to bake the pies from scratch, or which football games to watch.

You have resources, and we encourage you to share them this holiday season with the many, many people in need. Give of your time, your money, your pantry. Help your fellow man. When you do, you’ll be helping yourself.

Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful we live in the good ol’ USA, which, despite its flaws, remains the greatest nation of good, caring, free people in the world. Don’t forget about our troops this day, those serving now in Afghanistan and Iraq, those stationed at home, and those who have served for generations. Pay them the respect of a thought while we indulge in this nation’s bounty.

Find perspective this Thanksgiving holiday, and raise a glass to all you’ve been given, for which you’ve done not a thing to deserve.

Happy Thanksgiving.


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