Would you like some pies with your free drug samples?...and other Thanksgiving observations


Where has this year gone? We are now at Thanksgiving time! How did that happen? Weren’t we just cranking our air conditioners to end recently? The one thing to remember is that these chillier months come and go in the blink of an eye.

I’m sure stress levels are at an all-time high for many folks now - since it seems that holiday decorations needed to be up by Labor Day. I think the idea of leaving up permanent holiday decorations on our homes is a great idea. It saves a lot of time, energy and hassle. I’ve heard that the so-called experts say that it’s not safe to leave the electronic decorations out all year long. Bah Humbug! What a bunch whiners. Still, those so-called experts might have a point. Certainly, the elements cannot be good for the lights to be out year-round. After all, if a lot of time has passed and then one goes to flip the switch on those permanent holiday lights, who knows what could possibly happen at that moment.

Perhaps it’s just perception, but these days, time has become an even worse enemy. I suspect those thoughts come with age since we are on this perpetual merry-go-round we label modern life. After many turns on life’s journey, many of the years appear to be the same. Hence, the feeling of time moving far too fast.

During these last weeks of the year, many of us scramble to get those doctor appointments in before the year's benefits expire. I was in a doctor's office the other day. After waiting several minutes, a cheery pharmaceutical representative comes burst through the office's grand doors rolling a cart with case of drug samples and a little something extra on top of case: gifts. This year's gifts for the office were scores of sweet potato pies, the kind that Mama used to make for Thanksgiving. Well, in this case, they are the kind of pies that pie manufacturer makes en masse in laboratories and is bought up in bulk by the pharmaceutical company for a very low cost so that they can be delivered with a case of anti-inflammatory drugs to area doctors' offices. It's a strange scenario seeing a perfectly nice woman or man strut into a doctor's office distributing "free" drug samples along with Thanksgiving treats. Well, to me it's strange. To the office workers, it's all business as usual. They're happy to take the gifts along with the samples. So, c'mon, the holidays are upon us which means that there is some well-deserved time off. It's the perfect combination so how can anyone refuse free drug samples and pie? I cannot blame them.

The unfortunate part of the last six weeks of the year is that the nation practically goes on vacation for the entire period. Indeed, we need time to relax, decompress or meditate, but this time of year can feel vacant. To top it all off, scores of television series go on their winter break or hiatus -- which means that they take Thanksgiving week all the way through mid-January off. Certainly they all get a well-deserved break to be with family, but it is a bit silent out there with the regular programming schedules which are replaced with overly-rehearsed and choreographed parades and dog shows.

Every year I learn something new at Thanksgiving time. This year, I learned that there will be a lot of people out there who are even happier with their free drug samples and pies viewing parades and dog shows.  Actually those things are most likely a necessity to get through family Thanksgiving gatherings. 


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