Local Commentary

The Little City Weed

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Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. The day at our house is a Felliniesque dress rehearsal for the coming high holy days, without any risk of eternal damnation, but still filled with charismatic costumed characters struggling to emote show stealing lines well practiced, not quite yet internalized, that will someday make them the family stars they were born to be.

 

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Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. The day at our house is a Felliniesque dress rehearsal for the coming high holy days, without any risk of eternal damnation, but still filled with charismatic costumed characters struggling to emote show stealing lines well practiced, not quite yet internalized, that will someday make them the family stars they were born to be.

I usually open the rehearsal with a political line, played neatly against character.

“I cannot believe what that colored man is doing to our country …”

The Republican members of the cast take the bait and run with it.

“I do not think it has anything to do with his color, but, man, I cannot believe you elected a Muslim from Kenya President. This is why we need the Tea Party. He should prove he is a real citizen by providing his original long form birth certificate,” says cousin GOP Bob.

“I was referring to John Boehner,” I deadpan. Silence fills the room. Oscar dreams now dancing in my head.

The spell is broken by sinister cackling and a perfect rendition of the Marine Corps march cadence “… Lil yellow birdie with a lil yellow bill; landed on my window sill …” coming from the too well trained parrot in the kitchen.

It is a show business maxim to never follow an animal act, but Mom is feeling the moment.

“The turkey last year was very dry, dear.” she says. “What did you do to make the turkey so dry?”

“Mom, you know I did not cook the turkey last year. Wife did.”

“Well, I am sure it is because you are a vegetarian. How would a vegetarian even know what a turkey tastes like? It is really not your fault.”

“Mom, I am not a vegetarian and I did not cook the turkey last year. Wife cooked the turkey. You know she is the vegetarian; she is also a good cook. But if you want to make the turkey this year, Mom, all you have to do is ask. You do not have to pretend to not remember things and start acting all addled just because you do not want to offend Wife. It makes the kids nervous.”

The family gathers around the television for the annual mocking out of the people at the Macy’s Parade.

“That leotard is too tight on her … she looks like she is from Freaking Hoboken,” says Tony, the Last Minute Invited Friend of an Actual Family Member. “Hey, do you know why New Yorkers are always so depressed? It’s because the light at the end of the tunnel is New Jersey.”

Wife, who is from the beautiful Garden State, calls Tony a cab and he exits with none of the grace of Marcushio.

Thanksgiving is a day to bring together the emotional baggage of a year, to sort through issues by tossing emotional bits here and there, evaluating existing alliances and bonding as a people against perceived threats from indigenous elements of our existence.

It is, in this sense, a very traditional Thanksgiving.

 


Michael Gardner is a quixotic citizen and founder of the Blueweeds community blog.