Happy Holidays and Self-Sufficiency


First of all, I hope that you had a great holiday season.

I didn’t do anything too exciting, just enjoyed spending time with friends and family. I did maintain my yearly tradition of watching the best and most classy of Christmas films: Bad(der) Santa. It was a great, relaxing holiday and just what the doctor ordered. Hopefully yours was equally refreshing.

Now I, and most everyone else it seems, am busy digging my way out of a mother of a snowstorm that’s hit the Northeast (and apparently the entire northern seaboard). This is less refreshing but a necessary evil of living in this area.

Anyway, one of the great things about the holidays is that it often brings people together that don’t see each other very often. Family comes into town, friends visit home, etc. This is part of the magic of the holidays and something that most of us look forward to. It is also the time of year where people who are unaccustomed to dealing with each other are thrown together with a little bit of stress, sometimes some alcohol, and mixed all up. Before you know it, that staple of stand-up comedians starts: Family bickering.

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m truly blessed with a pretty chill family. We don’t usually bicker about anything, and if there is a bone of contention it’s usually resolved pretty quickly. This holiday was no exception in that there was no bickering, however I did get to listen to a rant from a family friend that got me pretty fired up. In the spirit of the holidays I kept my mouth shut, but it was a struggle.

For those of you not in the Northern United States this might not make as much sense, but I’ll try to get to the point quickly: Here in Maine, which is an economically-depressed area, heating oil is a big deal. As in if you don’t have oil (or some other heat source), you will freeze. Oil happens to be the predominant energy source for heating up here.

Of course, the price of oil isn’t getting any cheaper, and as the overall economy worsens it’s becoming a bigger and bigger deal to heat your home. It’s a tough situation, and it sucks that the situation exists. I’m certainly not going to argue with that. However, what pissed me off about the whole thing was his rant:

“Those bastards (oil companies and the government) aren’t doing anything about it! They’re not doing anything to help! They should be taking care of us!” <- And so on, and so on.


All I could hear throughout the whole rant was that he (and everyone that he agreed with) was OWED some sort of lifestyle and care. He wanted the government to come swooping in and care for his wants and needs, or the oil companies to set their prices lower.

I’m sorry, I just can’t get on board with that. I’m not going to get into the particular politics of what is and is not an appropriate service or function for a government to provide at this time or whether ours is doing its job. That’s not the point here. The point is this:


The government does not owe you a living. Oil companies do not owe you oil. Schools do not owe you a passing grade. Your boss does not owe you a job.

You are the only one that can truly control your destiny. Life is going to throw you some badass curveballs, no question about it. And sometimes life will reach down and deal you a lucky hand, too. Them’s the breaks, kid. The question is what you’re going to do to make it happen.

Or you can just rant, beg, and cry for a government (or someone else) that can take care of you… and own you, because if they take care of you then you DO owe them. The thought process of those who believe that they’re owed something is nothing but a quick trip to depression and servitude.

“A government big enough to supply you with everything you need, is a government big enough to take away everything you have”
-Thomas Jefferson or Gerald Ford (there seems to be some dispute over who actually said it)

What have YOU done lately to take care of yourself and to provide your own security? Comment below.

Comments on Happy Holidays and Self-Sufficiency Leave a Comment

December 31, 2010

Ryan @ 6:45 am #

Hey Man,

I often find myself sitting through rants like these and thinking very similar thoughts. It seems the mentality is that if someone makes it, they’re evil, if they don’t they’re good and because they don’t, they’re owed.

Very honest post, well said.

January 2, 2011

Isaac @ 2:21 am #


Definitely, dude. One of the biggest steps in finding legit success in life I’ve discovered is getting over the idea that just because someone is successful they must be doing something wrong/illegal/immoral. That seems to be the rallying cry of the unsuccessful, or even the middle class. It’s astonishing how many of us really have that beaten into our psyches from our parents (who got it from their parents, etc), and our early influences. They don’t even realize they’re doing it.

It took me a long time to get my head around it. Longer than I care to admit, to be honest. But those who succeed, by and large, do it because they have the balls to break from the herd. They’re not to be vilified, but instead used as models.

Thanks for commenting,


January 4, 2011

Matt @ 2:57 pm #

Isaac, Great atticle…Sounds like my house with both of my boys home from school, two canadian hockey players that live with us,it can get loud at times.It is good to hear other views Good and bad Hope all is well


January 5, 2011

Isaac @ 11:05 am #

Hey Matt!

Thanks for the kind words. Sounds like quite a houseful! I remember being the RA for the hockey (and football) boys at Maine. They were quite a crew to live with. It must be even louder in a house!

I was just on your site the other day. The facility looks awesome! Hope all is well for your athletes during this season.


January 8, 2011

mom @ 11:16 pm #

You did a good job keeping the peace, my son. Thanks. It meant a lot to me. LOVE, MOM.

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