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Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I’m Grateful For

Summary:
Lots to be grateful for. Of the many things I'm grateful for, the most important are: after 50 years of work I still have my health and more work than I know what to do with; good friends; family; freedom, opportunity, the good fortune that a few of the many stupidly high-risk bets I've made actually paid off, and I have a garden and a library. ("The man who has a garden and a library has everything." Cicero) It's a worthy exercise to list a few everyday things we appreciate: 1. My readers, correspondents, patrons and financial supporters: Of Two Minds exists because of you. 2. Everyone who supports independent thinkers and creators. On behalf of every independent creator of content, thank you. 3. Everyone who serves the public and maintains a friendly attitude despite the

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Lots to be grateful for.
Of the many things I'm grateful for, the most important are: after 50 years of work I still have my health and more work than I know what to do with; good friends; family; freedom, opportunity, the good fortune that a few of the many stupidly high-risk bets I've made actually paid off, and I have a garden and a library. ("The man who has a garden and a library has everything." Cicero)
It's a worthy exercise to list a few everyday things we appreciate:
1. My readers, correspondents, patrons and financial supporters: Of Two Minds exists because of you.
2. Everyone who supports independent thinkers and creators. On behalf of every independent creator of content, thank you.
3. Everyone who serves the public and maintains a friendly attitude despite the difficulties of their job and a general lack of appreciation. I've been there behind the counter, and I thank you for your service and positive attitude.
4. Opportunity. Life requires decisions, trade-offs, sacrifices and adaptation when things are no longer working. A reader who managed to extricate himself years ago from an oppressive, dictatorial regime and make his way to the U.S. submitted this comment a decade ago:
We live a very simple and happy life. It is amazing to see how most Americans do not have a clue of the unlimited opportunities we all have here. Most people want 'instant gratification' and they are not willing to sacrifice to get what they want, instead they choose to live above their means and go into debt for the rest of their lives.
5. Being average or below-average. It's really OK to be average, or even less-than-average, as in slow and untalented. Why? Because if you manage through discipline and effort to work up to average, you will have achieved far more than the talent-blessed individual or child of the elite who achieves success without developing tremendous self-discipline and without an appreciation, all too often, for the inner wealth of integrity and compassion.
6. Thrift: use it until it shreds / falls apart.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
7. Inspiration:
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
8. When all seems lost... a dramatic reversal:
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
9. Wildflowers.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
10. Rainbows. (Honolulu mauka)
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
11. Redwoods.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
12. Magic.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
13. Handmade leis.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
14. homemade pizza.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
15. Dessert.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
16. Camping in national parks: Glacier National Park.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
17. Yellowstone National Park: tent camping, first snow of the season.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
18. Blue sky.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
19. Harvesting and sharing fruit. (ohelo berries)
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
20. Undiscovered gems you zoom past a hundred times and then finally stop to enjoy.
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
21. "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."
Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I'm Grateful For
And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. (John 8:7-9)

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Read the first section for free in PDF format.

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Thank you, Richard H. ($50), for your splendidly generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your support and readership.
 
Thank you, Carl A. ($10), for your superbly generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your support and readership.
Charles Hugh Smith
At readers' request, I've prepared a biography. I am not confident this is the right length or has the desired information; the whole project veers uncomfortably close to PR. On the other hand, who wants to read a boring bio? I am reminded of the "Peanuts" comic character Lucy, who once issued this terse biographical summary: "A man was born, he lived, he died." All undoubtedly true, but somewhat lacking in narrative.

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