Over my years living in Hoboken, I probably never really sat down and thought about what i'm thankful for. I think we often get swept up in the day to day nuances of life, and don't really reflect upon our lives. I have had a great life in my 35 years. I was extremely fortunate to have two great parents, a cool older brother and fantastic older twin sisters growing up. My parents were very successful, we reaped in the benefits of hard work, and that work ethic was passed down to the rest of the kids. My entire family are proud of our accomplishments. We all graduated from college, continuing into successful careers or raising our families.
But we can't do what we do without the people around us. Our friends, co-workers or family that make it possible. So i'm going to take this day, to think about those who have touched upon my life over my years, and give thanks - and of course to say something snarky.
1. The #1 person has to be Mom. She put up with me as a hyperactive child & a hyperactive teenager - I calmed down to a managable level when I hit 15 or so. Over the years we have gotten closer, and this year she was a big help with my new condo purchase, offering advice and support when I needed it. Thanks Mom. Santa is bring you computer lessons, so I stop getting hoax emails from you.
1a. The second guy is Dad, so he gets 1a. I wouldn't be the man I am today without his guidance, and discipline and years of psychological scarring after I borrowed his hankerchief that one time when I was ten. Nothing quite like a well-used hanky from your father to shock and disgust a child who needed to wipe his nose on a cold winter day.
2. My sisters are #2, only because they read the blog more than my brother & email me about it. No, i'm kidding. This year they, too, were great in helping me with my new home. I only wish I never said the word "World of Warcraft" to them, ever. Nothing quite like getting player killed by your own family online, especially by 10-12 year old nephews.
3. I'd like to thank my brother & sister-in-law for hosting Thanksgiving again. Last year was a monster Thanksgiving, we had about 20 people, with food to feed about 50. I love getting my once every four month phone call from my brother that starts with, "Sorry, I was in Florida again on vacation..."
4. Brad & Matt have been like two brothers to me, even if the only time i'm welcome at the shore house is when they aren't there. Thanks guys. :)
5. Thanks to "Tiffany" for helping me quit smoking and join a gym three years ago. If you weren't sexy, this never would have happened. Congrats on your wedding. This is what I need - more married, hot friends. Great.
6. Thanks to Melissa & Kathleen (not Kathy) for helping me start the Philadelphia Eagles Club of Hoboken. It wouldn't be as successful without you both as my unofficial diplomats & drinking partners. Hopefully this is the time of year you can forgive me for all the stupid things I have said over the years without thinking. Nothing like alcohol to bring out the best in me.
7. Thanks Mike & Cindy, the very kind & funny owners of Mikie Squared for giving me a job for Saturday nights. It's very hard to get a weekend bartending job in Hoboken, especially as a 35 year old guy. They are very fun people, their current joke is setting up the outdoor furniture when it's 40 degrees out on a Saturday to look "open". There are three times of the year I look forward to: Christmas; the day I get Corporation X's bonus; and the day that we stop setting up the outdoor furniture at my bar.
8. I'd like to thank some of my fraternity brothers at Delta Tau Delta from Villanova: Brian T., Kevin T., Gomer, Buck, Denton, Kaz, and Gaffney (technically he wasn't in DTD, and left us by Junior year, but he was my best friend at the time). Villanova, as it was known as Villa-No-Fun, which was fitting in 1990-1994, would have been much, much worse if it wasn't for you guys as my friends...except for when I lit myself on fire. Also, Brian T & Bucky were the guys who got me to move to Hoboken in 1995. Them? Married with kids? Me? Same life as 1995.
9. Special thanks to ex-roommates Jon & Kristen. Easily my favorite two roommates aside from Bucky & Brian T. Also i'm not just saying this because you two were my only two roommates who paid me back on my PSE&G bill. Good karma to you both!
10. Thanks to you, blog reader. I watched my small site grow from only a few friends, family and my ex-girlfriends who read this site to an average 150-175 readers a day. I feel bad only because if you are reading my site you have to realize this is the dead-end, unpaved side street of the massive internet. Yet here we are.
To those I forgot, i'm sure I will get an email from you. But i'm driving to Washington, DC to visit my family on Wednesday like I did last year, and should be back by Saturday (i'm not bartending Saturday night, however).
God bless you all, and remember for one day to be thankful (and snarky).