“I’ve had many a player tell me all through high school and right up until signing day that they were coming to Alabama, then they signed with somebody else.” – Bear Bryant

We thought that Thanksgiving deserved a quote from a football coach.

There are few things more frustrating than being told to expect something, and then being handed, at the moment of payoff, getting a shrug and a “Sorry!”

We hate to be on the receiving end, but we’ve probably been in the position of being able to “give” it.

“Sure, dear,I’ll clean out the gutters…” Until she realizes that it’ll never happen and hires a handyman.

“Of course I’ll go to the AC/DC concert with you, honey!” Until it’s time to go, and she has a headache and suggest you take her brother.

We start with good intentions. We want to make our spouses happy, and we’ll agree to do something we really, really hate. And then spend hours or days or weeks trying to figure a way out.

How much better to say, from the start, “No, I’d really rather not…cleaning out the gutters always kicks up my allergies, and can’t we hire someone this year?”

Or, “It’s not really the kind of event I’d like…but isn’t your tennis partner a metalhead? I’m sure he’d love to go.”

Yes, the honesty may sting for a moment. It’s hard to hear a no. But far better to hear it and move on, than to live in a doomed expectation.