“The mass of men [and women]

lead lives of quiet desperation.” One of Thoreau’s best quotes. And he was no more right about that than during the holiday season as Christmas gets closer. The movies, It’s a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol, reflect the fact of that desperation. You can see and feel out there if you’re out driving or Christmas shopping today. People frantic with anxiety-ridden rolodexes inside them, restless and half-crazy.

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