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The Adventures of Ogden: Man of the Suburb
Episode 3 – November – Giving Thanks

Ogden woke up, and it took a few seconds to gain his bearings. He was in a car, in the back seat, and his younger sister, Terry, was looking at him, trying to stifle a grin. Why was he waking up in a car? And then he felt the pain in his hand and he looked at it, very clumsily bandaged.

“You fainted,” said Terry, obviously trying not to giggle.

“I fainted?” Ogden asked

“Yep!”

It came to him quickly. Whole family together for Thanksgiving, a little touch football outside, listening to the uncles doing dueling jokes, chatting with Terry’s new boyfriend Chad. Dad had offered to let him carve the turkey and . . . . that’s all he could remember.

“You cut yourself on the carving knife”
“I did?”
Ogden was now experiencing a faint memory of seeing a good amount of blood, but he didn’t want to think about it.

A voice came from the front seat “That’s right. A pretty impressive cut. Your aunt Janice ran screaming from the room” Ogden looked up. Chad was driving them to the hospital.

“Well,” said Ogden, sitting up a little, “It looks like my reaction wasn’t that impressive either.”

There was a pause in the conversation.

“So I assume we’re going to the hospital”
“That’s correct,” giggled Terry, “Mom said she’d hold off on serving the food until we get back.”

“So I’m screwing up the big meal for everyone.”

“Believe me, Ogden” said Chad, “No one’s blaming you. They were all feeling so sorry for you, and your Grandma called you a hero.”

“Ah.” That sounded like Grandma. So kind. More so since Grandpa had died.

So now, thought Ogden, this is what was going to happen. They would soon be getting to the hospital, the nurse would hear about his hand, they would wait three hours, the doctor would finally see him and sew him up, which would take twenty minutes, during every single minute of which Ogden would be liable to faint again. It would hurt. And they wouldn’t get home until 7:00, by which time everyone would be irritable and trying somewhat unsuccessfully to hide it.

==

“So, what happened?” asked Anna Joy, Ogden’s ten year old daughter fifteen years later, “Was it as bad as you expected?”

Anna was sitting between Mom and Dad on the couch, happy to be allowed to stay up and talk to them when her brother and sister were already in bed.

“No, actually. The wait was only about an hour, I was able to handle the work on my hand without losing consciousness and we were sitting down to eat before 4:30. And I think the visible happiness was authentic.”

“What about your hand?”
“Well, it healed pretty quickly, but you can still see the scar, see?” Ogden showed it to his daughter. The scar was faint but evident.
“And that was an interesting meal. I couldn’t use this hand, so Grandma offered to cut everything for me.”
“I imagine that was a humbling experience for you as a twenty five year old,” said Gretta.
“It was indeed,” replied Ogden. “But Grandma loved helping out. She still does.”
“Why didn’t you help him,” Anna asked her mom.
Ogden chuckled, “Oh, we hadn’t met yet.”
“Oh yeah,” said Anna. It was always sobering to consider your parents before they’d met. What if they never had?

“But here’s the interesting thing,” said Ogden, “I had taken a dim opinion of uncle Chad from the first day I met him. My immediate opinion of him was that he was someone who only liked to talk to people and was too interested in making himself look good. But my accident caused me to see him in a different light. He made a real sacrifice when he offered to drive me to the hospital. He really was quite helpful. I had been too quick to judge. I thank God for that lesson.”

“I like Uncle Chad!” said Anna Joy.
“So do I, now. And I am actually glad that I cut my hand, because it gave me an opportunity to rethink my opinion of him.”

“So that’s why they never let you carve the turkey!”
Happy Thanksgiving from the Responsible Puppet.
 

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