Friday, November 26, 2010

Frankie say ...



In the U.S., the day after Thanksgiving is, for many people, a day of rest and recovery. I can only think of one other day in our society during which it's OK to relax: New Year's Day. Both of these days of relaxation must be earned - either through hard work cooking all day, as is the case on Thanksgiving, or by drinking hard all night, which is traditional on New Year's Eve.

We are so overamped in this society, so driven to be productive or at the very least to stay in motion At All Times. It's no wonder our immune systems are compromised, our attention spans are fractured, for heaven's sake. It's no wonder we're so darn cranky about everything all the time. We stretch ourselves so thin.

I think we should strive to be a little more like our animal cousins who hunt, play hard, but spend the rest of their time hanging out - like cats and dogs, for instance - rather than our overly zealous, hard-working cousins, like bees and ants.

Ah, mine is tiny voice completely drowned out by the American social imperative to always and forever kick it up a notch. Ironic, then, to face the truth - that while most of my fellow Americans will spend today relaxing, shopping or otherwise goofing around, I have a full roster of clients at work.

Yeah, that's my story, always (it seems) swimming against the prevailing current. Que sera sera.

11 comments:

NanU said...

The relaxation here, the more humane pace of life, was what made me stay in France! Here if you're overworked you can see your workplace doctor and he'll put you on medical leave if all the vacation time isn't enough.

lakeviewer said...

Well, Reya, somebody has to provide relaxation for those who can't or don't know how to achieve it for themselves. Think of this day as your Black Friday.

Tom said...

rather be working then shopping...sometimes work is easier than the other stuff...relaxation can be downright dangerous!

Reya Mellicker said...

I hate shopping and would never dare to attempt it on Black Friday.

Lakeviewer - YES ... indeed.

Nancy, that's what I'm talking about. I have European sensibilities. Is it pretentious to say that?

Rebecca Clayton said...

Bees and ants start life as helpless larvae, fed and coddled by the busy worker bees and ants. Then they become pupae, which don't even trouble to eat--just transform themselves. And of course, bees sleep when it's dark. So even busy bees and ants spend a lot of time hanging out, just bee-ing or bee-coming.

Really, their reputations depend on looking busy when someone's watching. I bee-lieve there's a lesson there.

Reya Mellicker said...

Rebecca? OH. YEAH!!

California Girl said...

My comment is along the lines of lakeviewer...you are providing the relaxation others seek.

Good points you've made. I took Wednesday off to begin cooking as I no longer have the stamina to do it the night before and day of. Surprisingly, I was still exhausted from Wed efforts, when I made two pies, Parker House rolls, cranberry sauce from scratch. Baking takes days thanks to having to wait on dough and such. I really only left myself the turkey, stuffing, sweet potato casserole and mashers for Thu. My friends brought apps and my MIL made peas and creamed pearl onions. Still, the production was huge and long, lasting 9 hours from arrival to departure. It was so much fun and we all ate, drank and ate too much. I barely moved today I was so tired. A long walk with the dogs in the crisp new snow helped. But would I trade it? Never.

Reya Mellicker said...

Good work always produces the most satisfying kind of fatigue. All I really meant to say is that we forget about resting afterwards. We jump right back into another project.

It's so extreme!

Karen said...

We're feeling a bit perverse, or maybe UnAmerican, because we went for a several-mile hike at a local park that opened recently rather than go shopping. I can say FOR SURE that it was a lot more restorative than hunting for a parking space and competing with others to grab things on sale. Just hearing about the lines today makes me feel squirrelly!

Some of Patrick's workmates went shopping at 4 or 5 a.m. and seemed to enjoy it. We were wondering if we're over that whole thing in part because we're middle aged? (We have to pick & choose where we spend our energy, but also we're not all that excited by material stuff anymore.) Hm...

Reya Mellicker said...

Shopping at 4:00 a.m. sounds like hell on earth to me.

Glad you're feeling better, Karen!

Linda Sue said...

relaxing day today for us as well...heaven- no place to go or b no rushing around just satisfied and eating left over cranberries and pie. I don't shop- I will go to the art shows this season and buy local stuff for pressies but that's pretty much it. Cheers to you Reya! Have a joyful relax.