In the years I’ve been inhabiting this Inkspots space, I’ve written about 147 columns about our family’s past Thanksgiving holidays. I said “about,” so don’t lecture me on exaggerating, the about allows me to use any number I fancy. And today, I fancy 147 – it has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?
But I digress. Most of those past columns recounted my culinary adventures (and, sadly, misadventures) in preparing a feast for a cast of thousands. Or so. (The “Or so” also allows me to use any number I fancy.)
This year’s Thanksgiving will be a little different. A lot different, not just for me, but for so many people whose best-laid plans have been overthrown by the pandemic. Of course, the pandemic has done more than just wreck plans, it has caused incredible suffering and loss of lives. In the spirit of trying to find something to be thankful for during this time, here’s what I came up with:
I don’t have to feed a cast of thousands. I only have to feed a cast of one. (I don’t count Seamus, my newly-adopted German Shepherd, because German Shepherds are notorious for two things: shedding like mad and not being able to tolerate table scraps or anything other than dog food. I learned this the hard way.)
Though I am my only guest, I still intend to fix a turkey with all the trimmings. However, “all the trimmings” in this case means Pepperidge Farm dressing drowning in gravy, cranberries, and a hot fudge sundae for dessert. No potatoes, no salads, no fancy vegetable dishes, no pumpkin pie. I’m sort of giddy thinking about making just what I like. And having enough leftovers to last at least until Christmas. I love leftovers.
And though there will be only one of me at the dinner table, I will not be alone. The five offspring Bing and I produced, along with their spouses and assorted grandchildren, will be joining me on Zoom, one of the magical inventions that allows us to visit each other’s homes and all talk at once. My only problem with Zoom and its cousin, FaceTime, is I don’t like the way I look on the computer screen. I look worse than my passport picture. Worse even than my driver’s license picture.
I tend to fuss with my hair and lift my chin for a better angle while conversing with the gang. To the point that Meg, the most outspoken of our progeny, inevitably yells, “Mom, stop looking at yourself!” Bing and I have taught her it isn’t polite to yell, but I guess she forgot.
And so, dear readers, with vaccines on the horizon, we can only pray that this year’s Thanksgiving holiday is one of a kind, never to be repeated, God willing.
Happy Thanksgiving to all.
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