Thanksgiving With Ike: A Jersey Tale

“…and help me sing my song…”

He is not,

Soprano’s New Jersey.

Nor those goofballs of Jersey Shore.

Or those embarrassing Housewives of New Jersey TV shame.

Neither though is he Father Knows Best, My Three Sons, or some kind of weird human version of Lassie.

He’s me, or you, on a good day.

He’s me, or you, on a bad day.

He’s a guy who lets his Father-in-law carve the turkey.

He’s a guy who lets his Mother-in-law cut the turkey on his plate because he can’t do it with one hand while sitting at the head of the table holding his 8 week old daughter.

Putting his daughter Estella down never entered his mind.

He’s a guy that lets his 12 year old daughter, Rylie, share his seat at the table and who grins ear to ear as she tells me what her favorite music/tv shows/movies are.

He’s a guy like me who has somehow managed to out punt our coverage in life.

In love with his family.

In love with what he does.

In love with his fans, with the sport he plays.

Norman Rockwell, 1943Norman Rockwell, 1943
Before we broke bread at the table, before one bite of the bird, everyone around the table, took a minute to tell everyone else, what it was they were thankful for…it is an Iaconelli Thanksgiving tradition.

Everyone at the table gave thanks out loud.

Almost everyone, to a person gave thanks for basically the same thing.

They gave thanks for family.

They gave thanks for friendships.

Coming to thankful involved love.

Except when it came to my turn, most at the table know me, know what a sap I am for that kind of stuff, I have been accused in print of being “sappy,” and to those that accuse me of that, I say, “Thank You for the compliment, if you have come through all I have in life and not become “sappy” at this point of it, I feel sorry for you.”

When it came my turn to come to thankful I said simply this, “I am Thankful we live in a country where this is possible.”

Amen to that.

There are countries out there where families, based on faith, or other things, can only come together in hiding.

Coming to thankful.

We just had an election in this country, 100-million or so of us left our homes and voted for whom we wanted to run this country, regardless of whom you voted for, what your political views are, 100-million of us did that…and we did so without any tanks pointing at us in the streets.

Iaconelli Thanksgiving, 2012Nicole AlbertsonIaconelli Thanksgiving, 2012
Coming to thankful.

Every man or woman who has ever served this country for us, they are the ones who protect our right to give individual thanks.

Coming to thankful.

To all those who respond to help others in need…firemen/women, cops, EMT’s, Nurses, Doctors, researchers looking for cures, social workers, teachers.

Coming to thankful.

To wives, and to the husbands who love them.

Coming to thankful.

To our children.

Coming to thankful.

But most of all, to the biggest table we all sit around,

the table called the universe,

coming to thankful,

for giving each of us,

each other,

along with the gift,

of being able to care.

Of being able,

to love,

all those seated here with us.

“…little darling, come alone

on the bright side of the road.”

Bright Side Of The Road

Van Morrison

Happy Thanksgiving, and thank you for the opportunity you have given me.



[See more photos from this story here]