A few moments ago, I had a conversation with my housemate R about Thanksgiving. (I must mention that he was standing in his blue towel, and that’s the only way I’ve seen him lately. I’m sure he wears clothes at some point in the day, but when I catch him at home, he’s never in anything but his towel).
Our former housemate M is having a Thanksgiving celebration on Sunday evening, replete with a tiny turkey, potatoes, wine, and friends around her kitchen island. I actually forgot about Thanksgiving until status updates on Facebook started to mention turkey, baked macaroni and cheese, and Black Friday. Last year for Thanksgiving, I was with my cousin RJ and his family at his aunt’s house in Mt. Vernon stuffing my face with baked macaroni and cheese, salad and rolls, and playing with his five-year old daughter. Last year, I was thankful as hell that my amazing cousin made the trip in the rain to pick me up, so that I could spend the day with family; I was even more thankful that I didn’t have a child (my god, it started with the kicking in the car).
I was saying to R, that unlike Christmas, Thanksgiving isn’t my holiday. Yes, there’s family togetherness, but where’re the songs, the presents, the glitter and tinsel? Where the heck is Paul McCartney’s ” Simply Having a Wonderful Thanksgiving Time?” Does Thanksgiving have even one song? Is it just a holiday to indulge gluttony and watch sappy Lifetime movies?– If that’s the case, maybe I can jump on board.
Turkey was never a favorite of mine, nor were sweet potatoes with marshmallows, or cranberry sauce (one year with ground walnuts); so, the last Thursday in November has held zero appeal for me, until I started working and got the two days off. Maybe, I came too late to the holiday? Since the only appeal was baked mac and cheese (and four days of leftover baked mac and cheese), then I didn’t really see the point, especially with Christmas nipping at its heels.
However, R made a good point. It’s not about the food at all, nor is it about the huge, roasted bird. It’s not about the potatoes, the mac and cheese, or the poor duped Native Americans and the conniving Pilgrims. It’s about giving thanks, being grateful for being alive in order to a) give thanks and b) be grateful.
So, here’s my Thanksgiving list in no particular order:
1) Thanks Youtube. Without you, I couldn’t go on, nor would I want to. In the last hour, without getting up, I’ve listened to Frank Sinatra, Marvin Gaye, Funky Green Dogs, Elvis Presley and Deneice Williams.
2) Thanks Berry Gordy. You were such a genius, and gave such gifts to the world. I heard you may be a bit of an egomaniac, but which genius isn’t? And who cares? Your legacy will live on forever and give joy forever.
3) Thanks Skintology Laser Spa. Thanks for reminding me that botox is never too far away, and can now be injected for less than $200. Useful information.
4) Thanks Paul McCartney. What would the world do without Yesterday?!
5) Thanks Porkie. God, I’ve loved you, but I must let you go now. You’ve been just too good to me… so nice on the tongue. This hurts me.
6) Thank you universe for putting the most wonderful people in/on my path, from the lifers (aka family) to the chosen ones (aka friends), to the strangers who make a difference… and are no longer strangers.
7) Thank you expat bloggers. You’ve shown me, and countless others, in pictures and words, how amazing life is in Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden, Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy and South Korea. You’ve opened my inner eyes and strengthened my lust. (By the way, don’t get me started on lust again).
8) Thanks mum, for the most open, expansive love (but then again, you got lucky with such a sweet child).
Happy Thanksgiving All!
p.s Reasons, so many reasons to be grateful!