Along the American River, the wild turkey that have been making a raucous comeback over the past few years have been conspicuously quiet this week.
While they're protected by local law, they must be thinking about their relatives, who haven't been so lucky, and who will be served up on our tables today in celebration of our prosperity and good fortune.
It's easy to forget the role fortune can play in prosperity. If things have worked out well for us in life, we tend to think we've been justly rewarded for our years of hard work. For many, though, lives of hard work have led only to more hard work, and to uncertain futures.
For my wife and I, our boat has become a reminder of just how lucky we have been. Sailing on San Francisco Bay, we often think about how most people will never have the chance to do that, or even to enjoy many of the other comforts we take for granted.
More than candied yams, stuffing, and cranberry sauce, today should remind us of all the empty plates there are in the world.
If you have a boat, be thankful. Sail it as often as you can.
But is there someone without a boat you could ask to go sailing?
And are there other empty plates out there you might help to fill?