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Same Holiday, Different Perspectives

“We’ve got ANOTHER holiday to worry about! It seems that Thanksgiving Day is upon us.” – Charlie Brown, 1973

Yes, it is already Thanksgiving in the US and I think we all share Sally Brown’s bemoaning response to Charlie Brown’s proclamation when she said “I haven’t even finished all of my Halloween candy.”

Growing up, many of us sat on the edge of our seats when the Charlie Brown cartoons began the annual holiday swing through Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was the same routine, year after year, and we knew all the punch lines. While Charlie Brown was the headliner, various members of his entourage were always given the responsibility of conveying some of the key sentiments surrounding the holidays we were celebrating:

Charlie Brown: “Actually, Lucy, my trouble is Christmas. I just don't understand it. Instead of feeling happy, I feel sort of let down.”

Lucy: “A person should always choose a Halloween costume which is in direct contrast to her own personality.”

Linus: “You've heard of the fury of a woman scorned, haven't you?” Charlie Brown: “Yeah, I guess I have.” Linus: “Well, that's nothing compared to the fury of a woman who has been cheated out of trick-or-treats.”

Linus: “I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It's not bad at all, really. Maybe it just needs a little love.”

Marcie: “But Thanksgiving is more than eating, Chuck. You heard what Linus was saying out there. Those early Pilgrims were thankful for what had happened to them, and we should be thankful, too. We should just be thankful for being together. I think that's what they mean by 'Thanksgiving,' Charlie Brown.”

As kids, we never really paid attention to these “deeper” and sometimes funny themes imbedded in our favorite cartoons. However, as we get older, the simplest statements have a profound effect. Unfortunately, those messages are still easily forgotten as we always enter the holiday season in a frantic state driven by the extensive to do lists, the endless shopping and the responsibilities that come with entertaining family and friends. We love the holidays when they get here and we love them even more when they are gone. The time in between is always a blur.

While I love the nostalgia and traditions behind the holidays, I will admit that I don’t always get to live in the moment and relish the things I love about this time of year. For many reasons, I am hopeful this year will be different for me and my partners at Carolon.

For several of Carolon’s team members, we have experienced recent tragedy or difficult personal news in our lives. These events, while unfortunate, can typically serve to narrow our vision to what is important while eliminating all the “clutter” that is occurring in our lives. I believe that we at Carolon will be able to take the cliché of “giving thanks” and truly apply it with meaning this year.

We are thankful for our clients and the trust they have put in us. We are thankful for the opportunity we have been given to build something from the ground up and to put our personal mark on it. We are thankful that after some significant challenges we have picked ourselves up and built something we are very proud to stand behind. Most importantly, we are thankful for the support of our families who have given us the freedom to apply our passion with great patience.

So while this will be another Thanksgiving where I beat my brother-in-law at golf, watch my favorite football team lose yet another game to our rival and complain about all the Christmas lights that don’t work on the tree, I will allow myself to actually step back and give thanks for another crazy year and for the opportunities we have in front of us.

No matter how many times Lucy pulls the football away and sends Charlie Brown flying through the air…..we always hold out hope that this year will be different. Simply appreciating the opportunity of having another year to kick the ball is what makes the holidays so great.

Lucy: “Well, one of the greatest traditions we have is the Thanksgiving Day football game. And the biggest, most important tradition of all is the kicking off of the football.”

Charlie Brown: “Is that right?”

Lucy: “Absolutely. Come on, Charlie Brown. It's a big honor for you.”

Charlie Brown: “Well, if it's that important, a person should never turn down a big honor. Maybe I should do it. Besides, she wouldn't try to trick me on a traditional holiday. This time I'm gonna kick that football clear to the moon!”

[he runs to kick the ball, but Lucy pulls it away and he falls flat on his back]

Charlie Brown: “Aaauuugh!”