Tuesday, November 29, 2005

the in-between place...

Many of you may have worked retail, as I did briefly in the past. The Friday after Thanksgiving was a crazy day that began too early and ended too late, and left you feeling somewhat hollow inside. Then it went back to normal for about a week. What's the deal with that? (cue Seinfield theme). That week between Thanksgiving and the first full week of Christmas is kind of the "in-between" time. Sure, Television and Retailers would have you believe it is full blown Christmas Eve out there. But we know better- we still have heartburn over turkey binges, we aren't quite ready to hear Christmas music, and we kind of resent those early birds who got their Christmas cards out to us on the day after Thanksgiving.
The in-between time is a kind of anti-climatic limbo time- it's time when things not quite end and not quite begin- and it's hard to focus. Therefore today is a mishmash of linkage - a small salad in the lunch that is the blogosphere.

Black Friday seemed to be Black and Blue Friday for some shoppers.... while it ended up being a Black Friday for Wal-Mart and Blue Friday for just about everyone else. Here are Rush's thoughts on Black Friday economics.
It seems as if the 12 Days of Christmas is subject to inflation as well as virtually everything else.
If you love exploring music - this is one of the more interesting website that I have come across in a while.
What's this? Mainstream news is talking about animated specials? Have they been reading The Shelf? Check it out for some listings of upcoming airings.
In the political talk realm here's an op-ed on political free speech by George Will. Ol' VDH has a great article on our efforts in Iraq and the political fight at home
Lastly, Senator Joe Lieberman has a must read opinion piece (you may have to register -it's free- but it's worth it) on the progress made in Iraq and why we need to make sure we stay to do it right. Just a smidgen to whet the appetite:
"Here is an ironic finding I brought back from Iraq. While U.S. public opinion polls show serious declines in support for the war and increasing pessimism about how it will end, polls conducted by Iraqis for Iraqi universities show increasing optimism. Two-thirds say they are better off than they were under Saddam, and a resounding 82% are confident their lives in Iraq will be better a year from now than they are today. What a colossal mistake it would be for America's bipartisan political leadership to choose this moment in history to lose its will and, in the famous phrase, to seize defeat from the jaws of the coming victory."
Read it without your political party blinders on.

Just wanted to add- Christopher Hitchens had a interesting article about Thanksgiving that I debated linking to. I argued that Thanksgiving was past and we needed to move on, but then I countered that the message was still important and Hitchens had an interesting perspective. I couldn't argue with that so I conceded to myself. So here it is- check it out. Having lived outside the country for several years and also having grown up with several friends from other countries, I have always been interested on how we view ourselves as Americans and how others view us. I don't necessarily care what others think, I just find that, contrary to what mainstream media would have us think- we are much harder on ourselves than others are. While there may be some resentment, many envy the freedoms and opportunities we have, and at the same time shake their collective heads at how we disparage those freedoms and take them for granted. Maybe we should think about that for a while. Now back to your regularly scheduled Shelf post.

Well Shelfers- that's it until next time. Do yourself a favor- chill out don't create more stress for yourself than necessary. Go see a movie- Chicken Little is great. Make yourself a popcorn cake. Good stuff- this is the time of year to enjoy life- not overstuff it.

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.

Scut Farkus! What a rotten name! There he stood, between us and the alley. Scut Farkus staring out at us with his yellow eyes. He had yellow eyes! So, help me, God! Yellow eyes!

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