Ten Things for Which I’m Grateful This Thanksgiving

Deal W. Hudson
December 1, 2008

With the long and exhausting political season we’ve just had, it’s easy to forget to offer thanks for the many blessings God has given us. Here are ten things about InsideCatholic.com’s first year for which I’m grateful. Please feel free to add your own causes for gratitude in the comments section (about anything, not just the Web site!):

  1. I am thankful to commenters for providing a daily occasion for self-examination and growth in humility. I always look forward to the little – and often ingenuous – zingers waiting for me in the comments section. It helps me to see myself as others see me, which is not a bad spiritual exercise.
  2. I am thankful to Bill Donohue for having as much angst as I do after reading the morning news. Just about the time, I am wondering if the world is going to spin off its axis, I get a Can-you-believe-this? e-mail from Bill who just read the same damn nonsense in the New York Times.
  3. I am thankful to Brian and Margaret for editing out all my heated rhetoric and over-the-top verbal shots. They say you will always regret what is said in the heat of battle, and the same is true of a writing frenzy. Calmer heads prevail on the editorial staff of InsideCatholic, saving me from sounding like a caricature of the “hyper-conservative Catholic.”
  4. I am grateful to Bob Reilly for continuing to expand my musical horizons, even if he has a deaf ear to Korngold. Bob likes counterpoint and lots of it. If a melody goes on for more than four bars, he starts looking at his watch. One day, though, a melody from Korngold, Delius, Finzi, Vaughn-Williams, or Richard Rodgers will penetrate all that brain matter and knock him off his feet.
  5. I am thankful for Kate Wicker’s article on breastfeeding for creating a lively – and lengthy – discussion in the comments section. I knew the moment I saw the cover photo that everyone would read the article through its lens – and oh boy, was that a busy and amusing day on the site!
  6. I am grateful to the game of golf for its constant reminder that I’m in the right profession. I have dreamed the middle-aged male dream of competing against the pros, but every time I think my game has risen a notch, the wind blows the sand back in my face, and I’m just another kid with a stick and a ball having fun.
  7. I am thankful for my 2004 Cadillac CTS for providing a quiet place away from home and dogs to hold radio interviews. Since Daisy, our Goldendoodle, joined forces with Drumstick, our Westie, the sound of barking permeates the house at regular intervals, especially when provoked (as when anyone walks down the sidewalk).
  8. I am grateful to Mark Shea for drawing fire away from me and my unnecessarily earnest political columns. I thought I had the gift for finding the hot buttons of my interlocutors. Then I started reading Mark regularly… he makes me wonder if I’m holding back some primordial fire that I’m afraid to unleash.
  9. I am grateful to Rev. Frank Pavone for letting me look at the playlist on his iPod. I promised never to reveal what I saw, but I will say that we share the same bad taste in old pop music. Still, I’m glad to know that, for all his reputation for fire and brimstone, Father Pavone has a sentimental streak.
  10. I am grateful to Zoe and her food activism for inspiring me to reaffirm my commitment to Big Macs. The very idea of “slow food” gives me the creeps. Purgatory will surely require me to sit at dinner with Zoe and her friends, watching them take one hour to eat the salad, cutting the lettuce into little pieces, eating and chewing them one by one. Thus will my vice of impatience be burned away by the time dessert is served.

To all who visit InsideCatholic.com, read our articles, follow the blog, and leave your thoughts and comments, I wish you and yours a blessed Thanksgiving.

By Deal Hudson

Deal W. Hudson was born November 20, 1949 in Denver, CO, to Emmie and Jack Hudson, both native Texans. Dr. Hudson had an older sister Ruth, and eventually, a younger sister, Elizabeth. Emmie Hudson, Ruth Hudson and Elizabeth Hudson now live in Houston, TX; Jack Hudson passed away some years ago. The late Jack Hudson was a captain for Braniff Airlines in Denver at the time of Dr. Hudson’s birth. Later the family moved to Kansas City when his father joined the Federal Aviation Agency. From Kansas City, the Hudson family moved to Minneapolis, then to Massapequa, NY, and finally to Alexandria, VA, where they first occupied a home overlooking the Potomac River adjacent to the Mount Vernon estate. After a year, the family moved to a home on Tarpon Lane a few houses up the street from the Yacht Haven boat docks. Dr. Hudson attended Mt. Vernon Elementary School from grades 4 to 6 and has a special gratitude for the teaching of Mr. Hoppe who first told him was a ‘smart lad.’ Having moved with his family to Fort Worth, TX in 1960, Dr. Hudson attended William Monnig Junior High and Arlington Heights HS. In high school, Dr. Hudson was captain of the golf team, editor of the literary magazine (Guerdon), and performed the role of Peter in the ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ during his senior year. Dr. Hudson graduated cum laude with a major in philosophy from the University of Texas-Austin in 1971 where his undergraduate advisor was Prof. John Silber. His teachers at the University of Texas included Prof. Louis Mackey and Prof. Larry Caroline. Dr. Hudson minored in both classics and English literature. Dr. Hudson lived in Atlanta from 1974-1989, where he attended Emory University, receiving a Phd from the Graduate Institute for the LIberal Arts. He also taught philosophy at Mercer University in Atlanta from 1980-89. In 1989 Dr. Hudson and his family left Atlanta when he was hired to teach philosophy at Fordham University in the Bronx. Dr. Hudson taught at Fordham, and also part-time at New York University, from 1989 to 1994. Dr. Hudson first came to Atlanta in after graduation from Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) with an M.Div. While at PTS, Dr. Hudson managed the Baptist Student Union at Princeton University and became its first director. Dr. Hudson also was licensed at a minister in the Southern Baptist Convention at Madison Baptist Church in Madison, NJ. Dr. Hudson’s primary area of study at PTS was the history of Christian doctrine which he pursued with Dr. Karlfried Froelich. In 1984 Dr. Hudson was received in the Catholic Church by Msgr. Richard Lopez, with the special permission of Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan, at the chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cancer Home in Atlanta. Dr. Hudson has been married twenty-five years to Theresa Carver Hudson and they have two children, Hannah Clare, 23, and Cyprian Joseph (Chip), 15, adopted from Romania when he was three years old. The Hudson family has lived in Fairfax, VA for more than fifteen years, after having lived five years in Bronxville, NY and a year in Atlanta, GA, where Theresa and Deal were married.

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