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  • Writer's pictureJoe Pace

Favorite Fictional Characters, #329: Kermit the Frog

"Piggy will never find me out here."

I spent a lot of time thinking this morning about what character I could choose to profile who could represent how thankful I am to have such a broad array of wonderful friends and family in my life. A character who could capture how grateful I am and how certain I am that whatever storm clouds might gather today, a better tomorrow is coming for all of us if we keep believing and striving and taking care of each other. Odd as it may seem, I kept coming back to Kermit the Frog.

There are two versions of Kermit I cherish. First is the most famous, the harried, excitable, edge-of-collapse impresario, the frenetic ringleader of the improbable Muppet Show. He always tried to do his best to keep the operation on track, despite the countless distractions and disasters. He got the job done, and he took care of his people in the process. It's the kind of leadership I deeply respect and try - with mixed success - to emulate.

But there's also a quieter Kermit, the amphibian in his native element, sitting on a mossy log in the swamp, banjo in hand. Contemplative, peaceful, grateful. The Kermit who sings The Rainbow Connection is the frazzled showman in rare repose, reflecting on the beauty and wonder of this great shared journey, on the bruised optimism that the world tries so hard to steal from us and yet we guard so fiercely. The divine spark of hope that each of us has something great to contribute, the durable belief that we can make things better, that morning star that keeps us stargazing, the siren song that called the young sailors. There are those, Kermit sings on that log, who will tell us such things are merely visions and illusions. Well, they're wrong. Wait and see.

Happy Thanksgiving, my friends. Someday we'll all find it, that rainbow connection. The lovers, the dreamers, and us.

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