Be Glad You're Not A Lion

I AM THANKFUL. And sometimes I am thankfuller (read this and that will make some sense).

For one thing I am thankful I was never drafted by the Detroit Lions.

Here’s the thing about being a drummer in a marching band in a very long parade—you get blisters, blisters that break and ooze and bleed. By the end of a parade your hands look something like a turkey leg bone after the big meal. While most of the band members play only occasionally during the course of the parade, the drum line must play the  e-n-t-i-r-e  time. 

I commented on this reality within ear shot of my high school band director; once. The former army drill sergeant-turned band director pulled the cigar from the corner of his mouth, stuck his baton into my chest and said, “Suck it up kid. It’s an occupational hazard.” (The cigar part may only be real in my over-dramatized remembrance of the event.)

Although I had no idea what an occupational hazard was, I now had a working definition. If I could find my Funk & Wagnalls I’m sure it would say something about a risk or condition inherent in a given occupation.

So before you decide to be a bass drummer in the marching band, count the costs. About three miles in, that sucker gets heavy and your hands will bleed, and your shoes will be covered in horse crap, because the band always get placed right behind the 100-members of the county stampede club.

It’s kind of like being drafted by the Detroit Lions. (Not that I would know anything about that.) Even though you’re excited, you will suddenly realize that, no matter what, you’ll have to work on Thanksgiving.

Since 1934, every Thanksgiving with a very few exceptions in the late-30’s, the Lions have played on Thanksgiving Day.

  [image from used without permission]

[image from used without permission]

Let me say to all the Detroit Lions and you poor people in retail who have to go in and work on Thanksgiving, “Suck it up kid. It’s an occupational hazard.” JUST KIDDING!

I’m sorry you have to work, but we need an NFL game to play in the background while we sleep, and apparently, some just can’t wait until Friday to get their shopping on.

Don’t blame me though, Wal-Mart associates. I’m not the reason you’re working on Thanksgiving (or any other day for that matter). And for that I’m thankful.

I am also thankful for some others, those who serve, who don’t get to have Thanksgiving off—like my youngest son. Because of his work with the less law-abiding of our citizenry, he has to be on duty. Apparently, like football and shopping; crime doesn’t take a holiday.

So, if you’re working on Thanksgiving, thank you. If it helps remember this: while your occupational hazard is costing you a day off, it is far less tragic than the hazard of the poor old turkey.