What do you get when you mix turkey and latkes? You guessed it – Thanksgivukkah!
Every Thanksgiving, my family has a tradition (as I’m sure many others do) of taking turns saying what we’re thankful for each year. It’s a wonderful ritual that allows us to reiterate how important it is to have each other in our lives, and I couldn’t ask for a more poignant way to show my thanks.
This year, I am particularly thankful for my parents and sister, who have supported me through thick and thin, even when I told them I was quitting my job in finance almost three years ago to start my own business. (Though, my parents were a lot more supportive after they learned I had bought myself excellent health insurance… that’s what parents are for, right?) But this year, I am also thankful for something else that plays a huge role in my life and my work: technology. In this day and age, we can do almost anything with technology: text a friend to let her know we’re two blocks away, read a book without flipping a single page, look at all of our ex’s Facebook pictures (wait a minute… that’s not advised!), and even find a date.
In our parents’ and grandparents’ generations, it wasn’t quite as simple as:
1) Sign up for JDate.
2) Email some people.
3) Meet for coffee or a drink.
My parents were next-door neighbors. My mom was a teacher, and my dad was home from law school for the summer. She always saw this guy next door looking out the upstairs window while he was studying and wondered who he was… and whether or not he was Jewish. One day, my dad’s brother said hello to my mom as she came out of her apartment, and he told her that he lived next door. She said, “No – that other guy lives next door,” and my uncle informed her that he was the “other guy’s” brother. My mom, chutzpah and all, then said, “I don’t normally do things like this, but would you and your brother like to come with my friend and me to a concert tonight?” They did join, and at the end of the night, my uncle said to my mom, “I’ll call you.” Scandal of all scandals, my dad beat him to the punch and called my mom first. (It was kosher. My uncle was only in town visiting.) And the rest is history.
As a side note, when my mom was trying to determine whether the brothers were Jewish, she asked my uncle what his last name was. When she heard “Ettin,” she asked what kind of name it was, and heard my uncle’s response as “Sicilian.” Surprised, she asked, “Sicilian?” He responded, “No, it’s silly.”
Let’s compare that to our experiences today. We sign up for JDate. We email people who interest us. (I do advise that both men and women make the initial contact.) We go out for coffee or a drink (avoid dinner on the first date), and we decide if we want to let a relationship form. Easy as pumpkin pie.
So this Thanksgiving, in addition to being thankful for my wonderful friends and family, my health, the success of my business and my clients’ relationships, I am also thankful for the technology we have that allows us to meet the person of our dreams, one click at a time.
And in the spirit of Thanksgivukkah, let’s pay it forward. If you have a friend who might want to get out there, or get back out there, why not gift them a subscription to JDate? Rather than eight days of oil, it might generate a lifetime of happiness.
*I’d like to dedicate this article to my Uncle Mark who passed away last week. I wouldn’t be here if he hadn’t been “Sicilian” and introduced himself to my mom. Thanks for the memories.