There are so many events in the past weeks that I wanted to write about that I didn’t: Benghazi, General Petraeus, brawls at USAFA, suicides at USAFA; the reason I did not write is because I do not want to add to the divisiveness sweeping our country.
The political climate in this country is reaching a discordance we haven’t seen since the Civil war. It is the haves vs. the used-to-haves, the homogenous vs. the “melting pot,” the change vs. the future-phobic. Our voting apportionment laws do not help this. Forget “nation-building” — if our rhetoric does not calm down, we will be “peace-keeping” in our own families and our own country.
In the past, I encouraged my beloved readers to remember soldiers who gave their all to protect America. This year, I say, “chill.”
America is trying to buy veterans dinner, offer us discounts, and do a little marketing using our images. So, enjoy it. We all need a little fluff this Veteran’s Day. Yes, our warriors are still fighting overseas. Yes, young and old warriors have returned with injuries that are both visible and invisible. Yes, families are crying over the loss of their warrior. But for this one day, this one year, let’s go do some yard work, or have a free appetizer, and share some kindheartedness.
Bring your Military ID, your discharge papers, or your photo in uniform, call to confirm that your local store is participating, and enjoy these perks from American businesses:
Yard Work or Home Repair? The Home Depot offers a discount to customers with a military ID every single day, you just have to ask for it. Lowes offers a 10% discount to active duty every day, but extends it to all veterans this entire weekend.
The Golden Corral Buffet started all this years ago, and continues to offer a free meal to veterans on Monday.
Want to visit a National Park? EVERYONE can get in free this weekend.
Carrabbas is offering a free appetizer with no purchase required, both Sunday and Monday.
Christmas is coming — do you know a gourmet cook? Sur La Table is offering an in-store discount to servicemembers this weekend.
In fact, there are so many offers this year that I can’t list them all. Luckily for us, Ryan Guina at The Military Wallet, came close.
Because there are so many freebies, you will need a tactical plan to take advantage of them. RESTRICTIONS APPLY — CONFIRM ALL OFFERS. Here is my suggestion:
- Either go to a National Park, Colonial Williamsburg, Historic Jamestown, Knotts Berry Farm, Anheuser-Busch Parks, OR
- go shopping at Home Depot, Lowes, Sur La Table. Some of these are limited to active duty.
- Stop for a free bloomin’ onion and coke at the Outback Steakhouse.
- Doughnut at Krispy Kreme
- Free Slurpee at 7-eleven
- Free lunch entree at numerous places: McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood, Max & Ermas, Hooters (yuck), Uno, or Famous Dave’s, California Pizza Kitchen, Chilis, among others.
- Free appetizer: Try Red Lobster or a Long Horn Steakhouse Texas onion.
- Free dinner entree: The Olive Garden, Texas Corral, Bar Louie, Applebees, Chili’s.
- Free breakfast: pancakes at Denny’s, breakfast at Friendly’s, HyVee grocery stores with in-store dining.
- Lunch: Golden Corral, Little Ceasars, Sizzler, TGI Fridays, Champs, Red Robin, Cheeseburger in Paradise, Texas Roadhouse, Fox & Hound, Bailey’s Sports Grille.
- Free Dinner: Golden Corral, Lone Star Steakhouse, O’Charley’s.
Don’t hit every restaurant — we don’t want to put these folks out of business!
Instead, if you can, invite someone along you don’t agree with, and talk about something local other than politics and economics. Practice being kind. Have a nice weekend!