Thanksgiving is a U.S. Holiday, Maybe We Should Think Global
How far does your Internet connection reach? I am speaking mostly to those of us in the United States, but the question is a valid one for everyone. How far does your blog reach? To the ends of the political borders you live in? To some of us here in the U.S. that might be as far as a writer might think about, but thinking that way is very limiting, and offending to some. So, happy Thanksgiving to those readers that are in the U.S. (or that celebrate this holiday), and to everyone else, happy regular Thursday.
Write and Correspond for a Worldwide Audience
I just love seeing posts in forums and blogs that have a huge "Happy Thanksgiving" greeting as if the entire world is celebrating Thanksgiving. I really wish some of us here in the U.S. would have a little broader perspective of the world and realize that just because it is going on over here, doesn't mean it is the same everywhere else in the world.
It does show how the writer probably has a book full of blank pages on their passport (if they have one) and just doesn't think about the readers from other countries. Once you have traveled around the world just a little bit, you can see that there are so many cultural differences that thinking globally is important.
So, when writing, remember that you are writing to a worldwide audience. Don't limit your work, or offend your readers by totally ignoring what takes place outside the 50 states, or your country.
Get Out and Travel to Another Country
I will say that Americans probably don't get out and travel to other countries as frequently, or as much as we should. Those in Europe for example, are accustom to interacting with different cultures and languages where traveling to another country means a weekend holiday or visiting a relative. After-all, if you are in the U.K., France is just a train ride away.
If you live in the U.S. Mid-West (or interior somewhere), you might not ever hear another language other than your native tongue if you don't leave your home state. So if you get the chance to travel to another country, take it. Not only will it be enjoyable experience, but you will learn so much that you can apply to how you correspond to other readers, on the Internet especially where borders are non-existent.
Use an IP to Country Flag Plugin
If you think you are not reaching the international crowd, just install one of the IP to Country plugins that shows the country flag in your comments. There are a few different versions that will show the country, browser, operating system and a few other options, but they all use an IP to Country database.
The plugin I use for Wordpress right now is called Easy IP2Country and is based on the IP2C database, which should be updated every so often to ensure the flags show correctly. If you don't want it to show in your comments, you can still install the plugin and just not use it in your comments area. It will still show you where your readers are viewing your blog or website.
Happy Thanksgiving and Thursday in November
For those of us in the U.S. and who celebrate Thanksgiving, it is a great time of celebration. Abraham Lincoln put it as:
"I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union." The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume VI, "Proclamation of Thanksgiving" (October 3, 1863), p. 497.
So, to all my U.S. readers, I would like to wish them a happy Thanksgiving and lets try to think globally as we move into the fall season. Your readers will appreciate a different perspective. There are a whole bunch of readers in Europe, Asia, and all over the world that have access to your blog, write as if you know this fact.
I have to admit it has been several years since I have visited another country, but when I did, it was a great learning experience for me. I have been lucky enough to travel quite a bit. From Sydney, to London, Hong Kong, Paris, Munich, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, among a few, and many places in between. Each trip gave me a little more perspective from another part of the world, and I have learned to appreciate other cultures and differences, and it has taught me to be aware that my Internet connection does reach outside of my state, region, and country.