Things We’re Dreading About Thanksgiving Already
It’s almost that time of year again. Thanksgiving is two days away and although we are looking forward to overdosing on some turkey and then passing out in a comatose-like state because of the tryptophan, aka greens, ham, sweet potatoes…, there are some things we’re dreading about Thanksgiving already.
Remember back in the day when you would get up bright and early on Thanksgiving and either help your mother in the kitchen or help your father get the house ready for company? And you always thought to yourself you couldn’t wait to get older because then you wouldn’t have to work so hard. But you got older and you realized the full preparation for Thanksgiving took more work than preparing for open-heart surgery.
Family Members And Their Annoying Questions
Does any of this sound familiar? “When are you going to get married?” “Are you dating anybody yet or are you still married to your career?” “When are you going to have children? Your eggs won’t last forever, you know.” “When are you going to stop working for yourself and get a real job?” Family members have the uncanny ability to ask the most inappropriate questions in a nonchalant way as they chew a mouthful of macaroni and cheese and there’s nothing you could do but grin and wait for the torture to be over.
Missing Loved Ones
The holidays are definitely for family and loved ones but if you’re missing someone then it’s one of the most dreaded times of the year. It’s a punch to the gut to look across the table and see an empty seat that once held your favorite cousin or beloved granny the year before. You take solace in reminiscing about all of the holidays and memories you shared but there’s still a hollow feeling in you gut because you know that all you now have are the memories.
Sure, we can’t wait to see our relatives because it’s been a whole year since everyone got together and you’re anxious to get together with your cousins. But the commute to your grandparents’ house is a pain in the neck — mostly because you’re not the only one on the road. According to AAA, 43.4 million Americans will travel by plane, train or automobile this Thanksgiving. That’s a lot of people on the roads or in the air and it feels like you’re sitting behind all of them while you’re stuck in traffic.
Having a house full of family and loved ones can be a beautiful thing. But having a house full of family and loved ones can also be a huge pain in the behind. Especially when they treat your place like it’s the Hilton and you find yourself running after them cleaning up, doing their laundry and cooking all of their meals. The only thing you haven’t done is turn down the beds and leave chocolate on the pillow. One of the things you’re most grateful for is waving goodbye to your houseguests as they pull off and head back home.
Weird Dietary Requests
The more people you have over for Thanksgiving, the more dietary requests you’ll get. This person is allergic to nuts. That person is a strict vegan. So in addition to making a tofurkey, now you have to make alternative dishes that are dairy free. Uncle Sal needs to eat by three because he’s hypoglycemic. His wife doesn’t eat beef and wants you to make spinach lasagna instead. And their three-year-old only eats gluten-free.
Backyard Football Stars
While the women slave away in the kitchen from dawn all the way up until the main course is served, the men lay around watching the NFL games when they’re not asking what time will the turkey will be ready. Thinking they’re football stars themselves, the male guests head outside for a game of their own. But of course what starts out as a fun game of flag football turns into a testosterone fueled battle and someone will inevitably stumble back into the house with an injury that may or may not warrant a trip to the hospital.
Having To Say What You’re Thankful For
Of course Thanksgiving is the time of year when we express what we’re most thankful for. It’s even in the name of the holiday. But the longstanding tradition of standing up and telling everyone what we’re grateful for is just old. You express gratitude everyday, not just on this day, so why do you have to take part? Especially when your long-winded aunt hogs the mic and goes into a long, drawn out soliloquy about how close to death’s door her cat was before he made a miraculous recovery.
The only thing worse than your friends and family greeting you by saying, “Happy Turkey Day” is when they follow it up with “gobble, gobble.” Why do grown folks feel the need to imitate the sound a turkey makes? Yes, we know how a turkey sounds. We also know the sound a pig makes and a cow but we don’t sit around the table and say, “Pass me the ham, please. Oink, oink.”
Canned Cranberry Sauce
Who is eating this? Yes, we know back in the day when everything was homemade, cranberry sauce was a staple at Thanksgiving. But over the years, we found shortcuts for everything, including cranberry sauce. Now, someone shows up at the door with a couple cans that’s supposed to be their contribution to the meal. The cold, gelatinous dark maroon substance slides slowly out of the can and jiggles on the plate as you carry it to the dinner table. And when the meal is done, almost the whole can of cranberry sauce is still there.
The Clean Up
So much food, so many family and friends over enjoying the meal, so many dirty dishes left over. And it’s not just the caked up, greasy plates, pots and pans that need cleaning. There are stains on the tablecloth, mud, slush or snow was tracked in on the carpet near the front door and little Billy dropped his plate of food in the living room. By the time it’s all said and done, your place looks like a hurricane had a food fight with a tornado and you have to clean it all up.
The Leftover Turkey
Yes, we can’t wait for the turkey to finish baking and when it finally is presented on the table, with its golden skin and moist meat falling off of the bone as it gets carved up, we’re drooling. And the next day after braving the stores on Black Friday to score a good deal on a flat screen television or a pair of boots, you happily scarf down turkey leftovers. But by Saturday, you’re turkey’ed out. And there’s still a lot of meat left on the bones.
Let’s face it. The holiday season starts earlier and earlier each year. But after the turkey is cleared away from the table, the Christmas decorations come out of the basements or attics and everywhere you go you’re greeted by a holiday jingle. Sure, you’re humming along to “Jingle Bell Rock” now but it’s only November 28. Give it a week and your ears will bleed from all of the Christmas music. And what’s really sad is you have three more weeks of torture to go.