Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Climatic Thanksgiving Conversion
I used to hate Thanksgiving.
As a little kid, Thanksgiving was the lamest of the lame holidays, containing exactly diddly squat to entertain me. Instead of being plied with candy or presents, I was instead forced to wear non-disgusting clothes and have table manners, neither of which I looked forward to. The food was also totally extraneous: I didn't care for turkey, pie left me cold, and I could not yet appreciate oyster dressing. People in my house insisted on watching football at ear-splitting volumes, and I never even saw the Snoopy Thanksgiving Special. The weather was usually chilly and damp in the locations I lived in, and honestly, if anyone had been partaking in wholesome touch football games, I sure as hell wouldn't have participated unless forced at gunpoint. Finally, no one was letting me get into the nice champagne. Thanksgiving sucked.
Thanksgiving became even more of an elaborate torture during my asshole teenager years, wherein the presence of family and being civil was about as bad as being attacked by bees. Incapable of cooking and uninterested in any of that togetherness bullshit, I would usually try to retreat to my room to talk to my awesome internet friends for the duration of the day, emerging for brief periods to eat a bite or two of turkey and snarl at anyone who made eye contact. I was a charmer.
(I was allowed to drink wine. It didn't help much.)
As these things generally go, I began to come around by the time I hit 17, the age when the evil begins to seep out of most kids systems. I began to vaguely appreciate the food, the cooking, and even the hint of family togetherness like-crap although I would of course not have admitted it on pain of painful death.
This veiled ambivalence continued up until last year. I had had a really quite awful semester up on the side of a Frozen Hill in rural Massachusetts, and found myself looking forward to 1. being home, 2. eating real food and 3. not being soul destroyingly cold more then I ever had before. For the first time, I really DID appreciate Thanksgiving, down to the yearly battle over proper turkey basting techniques to acquiring some goddamn-decent oysters to getting gently sloshed on champers to watching football games I never can understand on TV - hell, I liked it ALL. I ate my weight in cranberry sauce and dark meat and even went back for dinner. I had finally been converted.
I can't wait for this year. I'm already scoping out funky new cranberry sauce recipes and anticipating huge quantities of bubbly, delicious, champagne - ahem, sparkling wine. Let us not even speak of the beauty and majesty of oyster dressing. (Oh yes, lets!)
A brief list of Awesome Things About Thanksgiving:
- Picking all the oysters out of the oyster dressing when no one is looking. Being smug about realizing you are pretty much beyond the law, unless someone decides to set up some sort of oyster-dressing security system which would just be overkill anyway.
- Creating a magnificent pie sampler of all given pie varieties without being required to actually commit to a single one.
- Eating my weight in cranberry sauce and using it on absolutely everything for months after the big day. (The real stuff. The canned stuff is a crime against humanity. )
- Leftovers in the evening when everybody else is generally uninterested in food, wherein I have a personal Leftovers Smorgasboard wherein I can REALLY cover everything in cranberry sauce.
- Eating all the creepy ummentionable turkey parts in the kitchen where no one can see me. And I do mean creepy. Well, turkey wings aren't creepy but they are incredibly delicious.
Posted by Faine at 10:23 PM