Apparently it’s American Thanksgiving this weekend and nobody told me. By ‘nobody’, of course, I mean my husband. This doesn’t really surprise me, as he’s not huge on the holidays that involve the consumption of mass amounts of delicious food (see this post). I, on the other hand, love a good excuse for a feast. If it includes a vast array of dishes, excessive baking, and the loosening of belts afterwards, you can count me in!
Still, the idea of American Thanksgiving has always perplexed me. Growing up, we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving, which exists a) technically to give thanks for the harvest, b) so we can have a day off in October and c) to make all those autumn dishes we want to enjoy IN AUTUMN, before the country plunges into 6 months of winter and darkness and despair… and oh look I’ve digressed again. My experience of Michael's holiday is limited to Thanksgiving themed episodes of my favourite American TV shows.
From these shows I learned some very interesting things, namely that small children dress up as pilgrims (who from what I can tell were early evangelicals with really bad fashion sense). Also, Thanksgiving is THE family holiday, and if Danny doesn't get home for it he will be devastated and his daughters will hate him and his life will never be the same. Okay, so I watched a lot of Full House when I was little... you know you thought Uncle Jesse was hot too! American Thanksgiving is about pretending to give thanks to the First Nations, and being in total denial about the fact that most of them were killed off with small pox infected blankets (okay, so we stuck ours on reserves and turned them into second-class citizens, but at least we don't have a holiday for it).
A typical Thanksgiving (at my house) would consist of : 1) a turkey (to be named after a politician) 2) mashed potatoes 3) dressing/stuffing 4) mashed turnips 5) some other side vegetable 6) cranberry sauce 7) gravy 8) pumpkin pie. A typical American Thanksgiving dinner (on TV) consists of all the above, plus something called sweet-potato pie, which as far as I can tell is exactly what it sounds like, plus copious amounts of extra sugar and sometimes marshmallows.
Despite the fact that sweet-potato pie sounds like the grossest thing ever, I have to admit the menu's not all that different. And I'd make the big feast this weekend if my arteries didn't start clogging at the thought of two such massive meals (Thanksgiving and Christmas) less than a month apart. How do they do it? They must have enormous... appetites. Seriously, though, I just don't have the energy to make a feast this weekend. I hope my husband can forgive me. I really don't want to end up as the villain in a bad Thanksgiving special.