There are two simple reasons why Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. First, Thanksgiving bears no religious or militaristic overtones, nor does it require you to feign pleasure at the passing of another year or celebrate the insoluble quirkiness of love. Second, it honors a couple of the guiding principles of my life, gratitude and gluttony. 

The principle of gratitude, for the spiritually inclined, is the key to mysticism. Gratitude, for the spiritually bereft, may be expressed for life itself, which is beating the one in four trillion odds that they and this planet exist. 

A special visitor is coming to Alameda to cancel any bad luck Friday, Dec. 13, from 5 to 9 p.m. Celebrate the holiday season with Santa on Webster Street and the West Alameda Business Association (WABA) during the popular 2nd Friday Art Walk. On the patio of Café Jolie, children of all ages are welcome to take free photos and visit with Santa Claus while sipping hot chocolate.  

Councilmember Jim Oddie avered that he “notified the Alameda City Attorney and City Manager of [his] perspective that the audio recording of the conversation between” Oddie, “former City Manager Jill Keimach, and Councilmember Malia Vella should be released.” (“City Should Release Keimach Recording,” Nov. 7).

As some of you know, I ask my human to write these columns as my paws don’t work on keyboards. 

You probably don’t realize this, but Alameda is a jungle of wildlife. The Old Man and I prowl around Alameda and are constantly confronted. I don’t know if it is because I am tied to my human by a leash, but these wild things do not give me the proper respect I deserve. Morning, midday, twilight and into the night Alameda is alive.    

The morning is my favorite time to catch the fresh fragrance of raccoon emitting from our sewers, home to Alameda’s ample raccoon population. 

Edwina Phillips — also known as “Rock & Roll” and Roxanne Cai — wears both a cape and an apron at Webster Street’s new sweet spot — Superhero Desserts. In 2011 Edwina and her husband Mark — also known as “NightBug” — launched the San Francisco chapter of the Initiative. Dedicated to going out and doing good for the community, The Initiative is a grass-roots group effort run entirely by volunteers. The group organizes: community patrols, homeless outreach events, needle cleanups and self-defense classes.