And I have a lot to be thankful for. In no particular order, here are some things that I am very very thankful for.
#1 My Wife and kids.
My wife and I have been together over 20 years. I love her so much. We met in college during an..incident in EE lab (you do not want me to work on anything that actually involves electricity). Since then, we've had 3 wonderful children. I am very thankful for them in ways that I think many can appreciate. My two sons love video games and are now old enough to play games with me. In my office we have 3 PCs where we play as a squad in BF4 and played Diablo 3 together. My daughter is sweet, kind and smart as a whip. She's the one who can tell when I'm stressed and will give me the kind of hug that only a 7 year old little girl can provide.
My wife loves Christmas. She's one of those people. But I tell ya, having someone with a pure, genuine joy for the holidays is contagious. She's brilliant, beautiful and wonderful.
#2 My friends
There have been some tough times for my family and I these past few years. As some of you know, there was a frivolous lawsuit filed against me a couple years back that accused me of a laundry list of disgusting but totally false allegations. My friends, especially those who were familiar with the events, were very important to me in a world where lots of strangers were eager to jump on the hate bandwagon. While victory in that case brought some vindication, it was my friends (and family) that carried the day for me. I am very thankful for them.
#3 My colleagues
This is kind of a repeat of #2. I really enjoy the people I work with. They really are more than just coworkers. They're my friends too. I really enjoy talking to them. They're fun, interesting, and fascinating. I get to go to work with them every day or interact with them online. It brings something to my life that I am very thankful for. They make every day an adventure.
#4 My health
This is totally selfish but I never want to take for granted that I have been blessed with unusually good health. When I look at the material success I've been able to achieve I never forget that my God given health was a prerequisite for this. Never being tired, never having a cold, flu, or other physical obstacle makes a lot of things possible and helps keep me somewhat grounded as reminding me that my success isn't due only to my own hard work or cleverness but also a roll of the cosmic dice.
#5 YOU GUYS!
I am a creature of the Internet. I make no apologies for this. I've been continuously online since 1986 when I was involved in BBSes. I know I say things on the record that get me into trouble from time to time. But that is part of the experience. I am thankful that I have the opportunity to talk directly to the people who like our software or play our games or about anything else under the sun. It is, and I mean this, the single biggest motivation I have to keep doing what I do. Take away the ability to talk to you guys and I would have retired by now. There is no business reason for me to keep writing computer AI, for instance. In fact, it's problematic in that it keeps me from my CEO responsibilities. But it keeps me in the trenches talking to you guys and I love it.
No matter where you are, I hope this message finds you well. Thank you for sharing your lives with me. I want you to know I really appreciate it. It matters. You matter. Have a happy Thanksgiving!