I feel the need

I feel the need

Thursday, November 22, 2012

It's Thankgiving! Let the joy and dysfunction begin!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

Here in the US, we take a Thursday late each November to put our lives on pause for a moment and share a meal with family while we count our many blessings and watch football.

Let's take the animal with the least flavorful
meat and stuff bread up its butt and
call it dinner
Every grade school child is told that we eat turkey, stuffing, cranberries, sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie to commemorate the first meal shared by the Pilgrims and the Natives.  Personally, I find it very unlikely that these two groups of people had the time and the ability to make a meal like this, given the limited cooking capabilities and actual food resources each group had.  Oh, and marshmallows hadn't really been invented yet, so there's that.

Note the bottle of wine in front of the CHILD.
Thanksgiving dinner...not for the
faint of heart.
What Thanksgiving has become in reality, is the gateway to five weeks of insanity and dysfunction wrapped up neatly with a night of complete debauchery on December 31st.  I think we actually have to have New Year's Eve simply because by the time we've survived multiple family gatherings  (BUT YOU HAVE TO BE THERE...IT'S  CHRISTMAS AND WE'RE FAMILY) we need a night to drink away the images of the uncle who set his house on fire while deep frying a turkey or the grandmother who made everyone cry with her "What I'm thankful for this year" speech at the dinner table...mostly because her top thing was that she was thankful she was old, and wouldn't have long to live with the ingrates and losers her children had become. 

Don't believe me?  Check out Bob and Brian's Holiday Horror Stories.  They'll start reading those soon, and every year there are more than enough stories of family dysfunction to destroy your faith in humankind.

I believe in Thanksgiving, I really do. I love the idea of everyone taking a day to breath and think about what's really important.  I like the idea of multiple generations of family gathered around a lovingly prepared meal and sharing their reflections on the year.  I like the idea of pie.

Reality, however, is that 2012 sort of sucked for my family.  Let's review:  Hubby lost his job in January. Skippy and I totalled two cars.  Peaches was involved in a very serious personal drama that lost her a friend. I spend more time at doctor's offices these days, thanks to my car accident, than I do at home, it seems. That's a lot to absorb in a short 11 months. 

But there have been good things, too.  The car I totaled wasn't paid for and not having the payments each month is a good thing.  Hubby is happy in his new job.  Skippy learned more about people while traveling 20 hours by bus from Montana to Minnesota than he may learn the rest of his life.  And Peaches realized that her parents might not be the worst judge of character when it comes to her friends.

2013 is going to be a much better year for us.  As I always say, "It can't possibly get worse...right?"  All we have to do is make our way through the minefield of the holidays these next few weeks and I'll be sitting at my friend, Linda's, house on New Year's day, sharing our own holiday horror stories.

Today, we dine with family, tonight, we go out and try to find the best bargains we can for Christmas gifts.   I'm a purist, I'm not leaving my house before 3 AM to shop.  Stores that open at 8 PM today should be ashamed of themselves...unless they are always a 24 hour store, that's different.  But retail folks need time to experience family fun and dysfunction while stuffing themselves with overcooked holiday fare, too.  Anyway, tonight we shop.  And tomorrow, Friday, after the shopping is done, and the taste of dry turkey and burnt stuffing and pumpkin pie made accidentally without sugar are all a distant memory, we look forward to the joys of the Christmas season.

God help us all.

Have a happy and Safe Thanksgiving everyone...and if you're looking for a great Thanksgiving themed movie to watch today, there is none better than "Home for the Holidays."

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