Searching for Chaos
So, I celebrated three Thanksgiving meals this week. On Saturday, I had Thanksgiving dinner with my mom’s side of the family. My mom is one of six (with 2 sets of twins, 6 kids in 4 years!). A lot of them like to work Thanksgiving and spend time with the other halves, so it always was just easier to get us all together, children and all, on the weekend before or after Thanksgiving.
So, that went first. It was great – my sister even Skyped in from New York! We tried really hard to hide the technology from the little ones and have them spend time just listening at the table and not be absorbed in the latest games (selfless plug to my brother’s iPhone game). It’s crazy to think that they aren’t used to the silence of just talking and playing some card games later on. But when your god son comes up to you and puts on those big round, puppy dog eyes and asks, “Kevin, can I play with your iPhone? PLEASSEEEE?” You just… you can’t say no. I’m going to be the
worst best dad ever.
Then Thanksgiving came around, and I was able to spend it both with my girlfriend’s side of the family and my own, back to her house in time to watch the Patriots stuff the Jets. Stuff. Like stuffing. It’s a Thanksgiving’s pun. We talked as a family about how much technology has taken over our ability to converse with another person. There’s a new trend going around, where you put your cellphones in the middle of the table facedown, and whoever touches the cellphone before the end of the meal pays for dinner. There’s a rumor that some restaurants are taking 10% off meals if you can do it– but I couldn’t find any source to link to. I found this but there’s no mention of a deal, just a request.
It’s a serious question though — Have we really devolved into a society where we can’t enjoy the company of others without checking our facebook feed or answering an extraneous “Happy Thanksgiving!” text message that was messaged out from a friend you haven’t talked to in years and if you scrolled through your messages it’s just “Happy X!” “You too!” back and forth for years? How did we survive without phones before? Did we really have to fact check where on the map exactly is Denmark? (It’s here, Michael, by the way.)
Then of course, Black Friday. I have never been out — 11:30PM is bedtime for me, not time to head to the mall to shop. But with this whole shopping kick I’ve been having lately, I decided it might be fun to go out. So my sister and I left around 8:15AM to search Rhode Island for the mob that is Black Friday. Because, even though it sounds awful, I always thought it’d be great to see chaos. To see our society disintegrate even more in front of me- two people fighting over the last TV, or the last pair of shoes… But Rhode Island was a ghost town. Turns out, everyone goes to bigger malls than what Rhode Island can offer. So we kept searching.
We found it! We went to the Wrentham Premium Outlets and found chaos.
We picked up different gifts for family members and the kids pictured above. Then we headed to Wal-Mart, because we heard it was even crazier than the outlets. But still, no ripping objects from the hands of others. I suppose if I want to see that, I have to be more dedicated to this midnight shopping thing. Oh well, I’ll stick to Amazon and Cyber Monday.
So, I guess this post is about society. We give thanks for what we have while we text under the table and then the very next day we kick and scream about the material objects we want. It’s such a opposition… But either way, here I sit, on my laptop, blogging on the Internet. My brother said “You have the choice – to keep up with the pace of technology or get lost in the dust.” I suppose this Thanksgiving, I recognized there’s a time and a place. There’s a time to text. There’s a time to talk to family. There was a time to see people at their very worst (though I slept through it). And this break, there’s right now to be thankful for everything I have.
Including all my homework. Crap. Until next week then.