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Happy Thanksgiving

Hi there. Obviously, for most of us this will be a Thanksgiving unlike any other. I won’t be getting together with any of my family members or any of my friends today (well, except maybe on a video call). First time that’s been the case since I had the chickenpox in 2009.

But while this year’s Thanksgiving circumstances may be less than ideal, I find that I’m appreciating the spirit of this particular holiday more than ever. As many people on social media have said, “This isn’t a time when you get what you want. It’s a time to appreciate what you have.”

And what I happen to have is a whole lot to be thankful for. Along with the obvious things — health, shelter, a wonderful partner, a completely awesome cat, etc. — I’m also incredibly thankful for Uni Watch, and to all of you who form the larger Uni Watch comm-uni-ty.

Back in March, as the scope of the pandemic was becoming clear and the sports world was shutting down, I asked what you wanted Uni Watch to be during this bizarre extended moment. The most common response was something along the lines of, “Please, if you can manage it, just keep Uni Watch going, so I can have at least one normal thing to rely on every day.” I’ve tried to take that responsibility seriously, and along the way many of you have told me how much the site has meant to you this year, which is an incredibly humbling thing to hear. Thank you.

Along the way, I found that maintaining Uni Watch on a daily basis was exactly what I needed as well. It kept me in a rhythm, gave me a sense of purpose, and kept me in touch with so many of you. And although the sports world was shut down for months, there was plenty of news to cover — unveilings, the renaming of the ’Skins, and a lot more. I’m not sorry that the sports world started up again, but those four months or so when everything was shut down were surprisingly rewarding in terms of creating Uni Watch content and getting feedback from you folks. I’m proud of how we all weathered that storm, and I’m truly thankful for the role that Uni Watch — including all of you — has played in my life this year.

In the spirit of the holiday, I’d like to take a minute to give thanks to all the people who continue to make Uni Watch possible, including Ticker assistants Lloyd Alaban, Anthony Emerson, Alex Hider, and Jamie Rathjen; “Collector’s Corner” columnist and Facebook editor Brinke Guthrie; membership card designer Scott M.X. Turner; merch designers/collaborators Todd Radom, Bryan Molloy, and Nathan Haas; weekend contributors Terry Duroncelet Jr., Michael Malinowski, Rex Henry, Dennis Bolt, Kyle Acker, Ethan Dimitroff, Jim Vilk, and Robert Marshall; webmaster John Ekdahl; proofreader Jerry Wolper; Photoshopper Nic Schultz; cap fulfillment manager Mark LaFountain; and, especially, deputy editor Phil Hecken, the world’s hardest-working bench coach.

Big thanks also to Zac Neubauer, who provided the vintage postcard image that I’ve been featuring on these Thanksgiving posts for more than a decade now.

I realize this will be a hard day for many people, especially if you’re by yourself and/or if you’ve lost loved ones during the course of this terrible year. As I’ve been saying all along, we’re all in this together, so please accept a virtual hug from me if you’re feeling blue. The storm isn’t yet over, but the vaccine news is promising, so here’s hoping we’re all enjoying a more conventional Thanksgiving a year from now.

Everyone stay safe, stay well, and stay in touch, and thanks again for making Uni Watch a special place. Peace. — Paul

Comments (40)

    Thank you, Paul and the whole Uni Watch team for keeping things going during this crazy year. It’s been great to have a dose of stability and (generally) positivity every day. You’re the best!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Happy Thanksgiving Paul and Uni-watch community! So very thankful for all of you! Enjoy the day!

    So grateful to get to be a part of this community every day. Happy Thanksgiving to you all… and to Paul… you’re a mensch for hanging in with us, and I’m glad to support you however possible in these crazy times.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you Paul and Mary as well! It is true, we have so much to be thankful for! First year of being a uni watch member has been wonderful for me as well.

    UniWatch has been a bright spot for me nearly every morning for a long time. Happy Thanksgiving Paul and Mary and everyone who makes this place what it is. Stay safe!

    Happy Thanksgiving, Paul! And Happy Thanksgiving to the whole Uni Watch team. I am thankful for the role that Uni Watch has played for years now, but especially this year. It’s a community of other people who Get It(TM), and to have had that outlet for community at a time when in person interactions were (and are) so necessarily limited. Please accept this virtual clink of a glass as cheers to you all as we enjoy this day and make it through the rest of the year.

    I am thankful for you, Paul. You have indeed kept UniWatch going. It is the first thing I check online every day. Having this community during this dumpster fire of a year has been much appreciated.

    Happy Thanksgiving to all in the comm-Uni-ty, and those you are celebrating with today. Be safe and stay well.

    Thank you, Paul. Have a Thanksgiving! (Asking for a happy one seems like a little much for this year.)

    Happy American Thanksgiving to my neighbours south of the border!

    Thankful I have day off today too. I can check out some morning football on a Thursday!

    I am thankful Uni Watch exists. Appreciate the work Paul and all the staff put in to make this happen. A place where I can go and be part of a large community that Gets It.

    Paul-
    Reading your thoughtful post was nice way to wrap up Thanksgiving day. All my best to you and the rest of your household.
    I too am thankful for Uni Watch and the great friends including you that I have made through the site.
    Be well, be safe, be cool,
    -Jimmy

    Thank you Paul and for everything you do every single day. The normal part of Uni-Watch has been one of the few constants this year. And for that I am eternally grateful.

    Happy thanksgiving to the whole Uni-Watch community; and a special one to those who have a heavy hand in bringing it to us. Every sentiment you echoed rang true. This daily entry has been one of my only places of normalcy. We’ve had family members die alone in the hospital with no funeral, had Covid myself, lost income, like many people everywhere experiencing this. The fortitude of Uni-Watch has been one of a few cathartic sanctuaries for me.
    Stay safe and enjoy the holiday and the season to come. I firmly believe that we aren’t guidelessly wandering for what comes next. There is purpose.
    Thanks Paul for all you do in starting this thing called Uni-Watch. It’s a brotherhood I’m so glad I found years ago.

    Be blessed everyone.

    Thanks Paul. I’m thankful for all the medical workers who have taken the brunt of this, many times without the needed resources. I’m also thankful to all the brilliant people who have been working on the various vaccines and therapeutics. Let’s all stay vigilant for a few more months, until these promising vaccines can be distributed. There appears to be a bright light at the end of the tunnel, and it isn’t an oncoming train.

    Thank you Paul for giving your community great Uni analysis. Your posts are a bright spot in my every day routine. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone,

    There’s been a lot of commentary recently on the overall esthetics of an NFL game, i.e. how the field looks, lighting etc. One, I expect “no shit Sherlock” question:

    Who would like to see the Lions play the annual Thanksgiving day game outside at Coamerica Park?

    Happy thanksgiving!! Thank you for this awesome website and continuing to keep it as usual during covid

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone,

    When I opened Uni Watch today and saw the vintage postcard image I thought to myself “holy cow wonder how long Paul has been using this image?”

    Ten years!!
    Awesome.

    Happy Thanksgiving to Paul, Mary, the rest of the crew, and all of my American uniwatching friends.

    From Winnipeg, Manitoba
    Home of the still defending Grey Cup champion Blue Bombers.

    Thank you so much Paul and the Uni Watch team! You all have been the main source of normalcy this year and have helped make this difficult time a little more enjoyable. Happy Thanksgiving!

    I have this thought every year—Those Lions unis for Thanksgiving are perfect. Create a plain white jersey for road games and call it a day. They’d have their permanent set. Forever.

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