Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Thanks, but no thanks!
Our very first Thanksgiving after we were married, we excitedly planned to cook our first holiday dinner-and then found out in the newspaper on Thanksgiving morning that our turkey had been recalled due to some food poisoning concerns. A quick trip to the grocery store revealed that our turkey was actually ok-but still, “A little heart attack with your stuffing, anyone?” ( Or, how not to make a good impression-make your guests ill.)
There was the Thanksgiving in New York. We had just moved there, and we were still getting to know people. We invited a serious young couple-Jean and Jim- and their small daughter Sarah over to celebrate the day with us-the “ us” being Stuart, myself and our Bassett Hound Maggie. We tried to make a good impression. We tried to make everything perfect. And I didn’t want to appear rude, but I honestly couldn’t understand what Jean was trying to tell me, making only whimpering noises, until she pointed towards the living room-and there was Maggie, with the entire cheese ball in her mouth. No body wanted any appetizers after that.
Then there was the year that I decided to try to get the kitchen as clean as possible while some of the food was still cooking so that after dinner there wouldn’t be a gigantic mess to clean up. I grabbed a measuring cup full of grease and bits of turkey, and dumped it down the sink. I realized my mistake when Stuart asked what had become of the turkey “drippings.” Goodbye Thanksgiving gravy. (This is why you always want to have gravy mix on hand, I realized.)
Two years ago, Stuart, Amy and I went to my parents house for Thanksgiving. Thursday morning we decided to attend Thanksgiving Day services at a quaint little church near their home. During Communion, as I prepared to take a drink of wine from the large cup I was offered-it flew out of the Communion assistant’s hands and spilled all down the front of my sweater. “Oh I’m so sorry!” she gasped. “Don’t feel bad.” I shot back. “I like wearing my wine!” and at that holy moment instantly felt like the most blasphemous person on earth. Afterwards, though, she came up to me and joked as well-“People will think you’ve been hitting the bars early today!” and we both laughed. And luckily my sweater was red wool, so no harm was done.
Later that day, after we’d finished our delicious dinner and we were relaxing, I suddenly had the sinking feeling that I hadn’t unplugged my own iron (an older model-one that didn’t have auto shut off) at my own house--100 miles away. I quickly dismissed the thought as irrational and put it out of my head. But you guessed it-when we got home after that Thanksgiving visit-and I looked in my sewing room-there it was-my iron- STILL PLUGGED IN!
This year-we are having Thanksgiving dinner at our house again. And getting through the day without any surprises—for that I will be truly thankful!