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'Happy Holiday Reality Check' by Wal Ozello

Why do I need a holiday to bring me back to reality?

Let’s face it. In today’s media world of Obamacare debt ceiling minimum wage duck dynasty fear mongering, it’s tough to have Christmas Spirit. I’m not referring to the Christmas Spirit that inspires Ebenezer Scrooge to bring a huge feast to the Crachit family after he realizes he’s been a jerk for decades. I’m talking about the wonderful life Christmas Spirit George Bailey gets after realizing his life doesn’t suck as much as he thought it did.

Think about it. Turn on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, The Daily Show, or whatever your flavor of news is. Read the Huffington Post, The Daily Kos, or Redstate and you’ll soon discover that your world as you know it is coming to an end. Your ideological opposite is coming for you and they’ll turn it into a world of humans marrying their dogs or the dissolution of Medicare. All this clutter is just smoke and mirrors to the true reality of your life.

This Christmas Eve morning, I turned on the news and started hearing all the hype and thought, “How bad is my world?” After some deep thinking, I realized I have it pretty good. My guess is you do, too. Here are the basics:

1) I’m alive. My children are alive. My wife is alive. What more can I really want beyond this?

2) My family isn’t in any immediate danger. In other words, I don’t live in a war zone. I live in Upper Arlington. My biggest concern here is what type of parking spot I’ll get at Giant Eagle. Could you imagine not wanting to leave your house in fear of getting shot by gang fire? Or worse, yet, a suicide bomber?

3) I have easy access to healthcare. All this argument over obamacare is a big huge pissing match between two political parties. Seriously folks, it’s not the end of the world either way. No one’s gonna die in this country because Obamacare is or isn’t gonna happen. Can we all just realize that come January 1st, we’re going to just as healthy as we were on December 31st?

4) I have roof over my head, two cars in the garage, heat, water, cable, internet access, computers, cell phones, food in my refrigerator, clothes in my closet, and enough extra money to do fun things once in a while.

Seriously, what do I really need beyond all this? What more do I need in life that I don’t already have? Advertising would tell me I need more: that cool tablet/computer, new iPhone, blueray movie, kindle fire, or expensive jewelry for my wife. The media would tell me I need more: we need to repeal obamacare, raise the minimum wage, and stop those pesky republicans/democrat/teaparty/whoever from destroying the American Way.

I’m going to have none of that. I’m just fine.

It will be a great Christmas at the Ozello’s this year. Not because the kids will get a bunch of cool presents, but because we’ll be together. Playing games, eating great food, in my warm house and remembering the most important part of Christmas is not getting everything you want. It’s appreciating everything you have.

Wal Ozello is the author of  Assignment 1989: The Time Travel Wars and is the lead singer of the Columbus hairband Armada. He's a resident of Upper Arlington, Ohio and a frequent customer at Colin's Coffee.