Thanksgiving 2018

 Cooking With John

Cooking With John

(Sunday Paper, Volume III, Issue 47)

For the second year in a row and, coincidentally, the second year in my life, I was the turkey carver on Thanksgiving.

That’s not what I’m here to talk about today - but it did result in this great picture that I can use some day as a cover photo in the unlikely event that I ever put out a cookbook.

So that’s one thing I can be thankful for this year.

But it is certainly at the bottom of the list of things I’m thankful for this year.

Because it’s been a good year and I’d like to take a minute to acknowledge that.

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I’ve written before - many times - about how much I love Thanksgiving.

And sure, it’s because of the food and the football and the family and the friends.

But I was thinking about it this week and there’s an element I’ve never really thought about before which is one of the reasons I like Thanksgiving so much - it’s the beginning of the time of year where I start taking stock of the year.

I don’t know if everyone does this as much as I do - or at least as much as I’ve done it in the last five years. Ever since I left teaching I’ve really thought hard about the year - have I done what I wanted to do, have I accomplished my goals, have I made progress towards those goals? Where am I in relation to where I was last year?

Maybe because I need to hold myself accountable rather than have an employer do that - I don’t know exactly…but I love this time of year for personal reasons - the holidays are just enjoyable to me in general - but also now professional reasons, because I get to look back for the aforementioned reasons.

And this year has been an especially good year - work has continued on an upward trend, which has, I think, cleared my mind in a way to allow me to free up some creativity.

I’ve been able to develop some goals for 2019 in that department.

I had a good year in comedy. I didn’t get out numbers-wise as much this year as in previous years, but I did accomplish my comedy goals for the year - I’ll write more about that in the end-of-year post.

I turned 40. (I haven’t written much about this, so you may be surprised to learn about it.) Kathy threw me a great 40th birthday party. And I loved doing that ‘40 Of My Favorite Things’ countdown - it helped me realize some of the creative ventures I’d like to try to do in 2019 for the Facebook page.

I just feel like, as 2018 comes to a close, I’m in a really good place to begin 2019. And there’s still a month to pad that strong finish to this year.

Which is another reason I like this time of year - Thanksgiving weekend feels like one Saturday after another starting on Thursday.

And this year, with an early Thanksgiving, there’s a bonus week of November. When I was a teacher, that was a little bit of a nightmare…one more week before the much-needed winter break.

But when you’re having a year like this, it’s kind of a gift that there’s more of the year still to go.

Writing

*I feel like in previous years I’ve kind of mailed in Thanksgiving week, with the early release for the girls on Wednesday and the fact that Thursday and Friday weren’t really work days. I didn’t do much Thursday and Friday, but I worked really hard Monday through Wednesday to earn the long weekend. (I did plan on doing some work Sunday morning but when I’m writing this I don’t know if that actually happened.)

Comedy

*Not a huge week for comedy, but one big show. I performed at The Comedy Studio on Thanksgiving night. It was a lot of fun - the crowd was great. It was the kind of night that makes you feel good about yourself on stage. It was a nice way to end my favorite holiday. I did one new joke that’s been going well and a lot of older, more tried-and-true stuff.

I’ll be back at The Comedy Studio on Thursday, December 6th, if you’re looking ahead. Before that? Probably some mics and I’ll get out to some shows this week.

What I’ve Been Enjoying

*I didn’t finish my music recommendations on Facebook this week, mostly because Facebook was kind of wonky and I wasn’t confident anyone was seeing anything Tuesday or Wednesday. But here’s a few songs you can check out on your own: I posted about Vance Joy’s ‘Lay It On Me’ and Cage the Elephant’s ‘Whole Wide World’. I also recommend Maggie Rogers’ ‘Leave The Light On’ (she sounds to me a lot like Sara Bareilles), ‘Jennie Jenkins’ by Mount Joy (no relation to Vance), and as I told you recently, George Ezra’s ‘Shotgun’. There’s also a Tom Petty song called ‘You and Me’ from something called The Clubhouse Sessions. I don’t know much about it other than it’s been getting some radio play on the station I listen to in the Boston area and I told my brother about it and he knows his Tom Petty but didn’t know this song. For whatever that’s worth. (And now I’ll listen almost exclusively to Christmas music for the next month.)

Notes

*I have a big plan for the days leading up to Christmas. Long-time Facebook friends may remember the ‘25 Rejected Christmas Cards’ running gag. That was fun. This time I’m going to do kind of a take on an Advent Calendar…or, more accurately, a Christmas Countdown, since it really has nothing to do with Advent. I hope you’ll check it out, starting Friday, on the Facebook page. You know how much I like my countdowns.

*Besides that big plan, I’m going to try to have more of a social media presence in the coming weeks and months, so if you want to follow along, you know the deal - John Sucich is the Facebook page, @jsucich is the Twitter handle, and it’s @jsucich on Instagram, if you want to follow along there. I need to get better with Instagram. (I think I did OK this weekend - posted some dog stuff. That’s always good, right?)

*Performing on Thanksgiving was a good exercise in eating moderately that day. I didn’t want to be in gastrointestinal distress during the show so I really mindfully paced myself during the day. That was at my sister-in-law’s, where we had a nice meal. But on Friday, at my mom’s, we had leftovers for lunch…and I mindlessly did not pace myself and ate like a pig. So much so that I didn’t even have dinner Friday night. Let’s just say it’s a good thing I didn’t have a show on Friday.

*I also talked myself out of running Framingham’s annual Thanksgiving 5K on Thursday morning because I knew I had the show that night. Haha. What a lame excuse. But it worked out for the best because I would not have wanted to run in those frigid temperatures.

*Leaf update: We’re not going to make it. It’s going to be a wet Sunday and I just don’t know how many leaves we’ll be able to put out for the last collection of the season. It’s going to be a long winter.

*As always, but especially thinking about it on Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for you reading and coming out to shows and being supportive from up close or afar. Much appreciated.