Thanksgiving Advice

The Week Past Thanksgiving: A Lament 4

‘Tis a week past Thanksgiving and inside my fridge                                                                                  

Is the sadness that happens when we cross that bridge

From feast into famine that invariably follows

A week made for gluttons and too many swallows.


Desserts were stupendous, the big bird a prize

And I thought that my stomach would outsize my eyes.

And so with abandon I ate all I saw—

The turkey, the carrots, the rolls and the slaw,

The cranberry jelly that mixed well with stuffing,

Potatoes so light there was no need for fluffing,

The cheeses and olives, mimosas and wine,

And “More, please” and “Yes, please” and “That wing is fine,”

All smothered in gravy and chased with a pie—

‘Til I was so full I was sure I would die.

But then came the leftovers—pick, pick, pick, pick—

And I’m thankful today that I didn’t get sick.

But, though my insides stayed hearty and healthy and hale,

My outside was stunned by the mean, spiteful scale.

And now here I sit, feeling puffy and round

As the scale laughs maniacally, pound after pound.


So today in my fridge there is nothing to crow for,

Nothing my sweet tooth or bread butt could go for.

Instead there’s arugula, yogurt, a pear,

Some cherry tomatoes that squirt in my hair

When I stick a fork in them picturing candy

And wishing they came with a snifter of brandy—

Just a small one will do or a thimble of sherry

Or a jug of cheap wine, maybe Pop’s elderberry—

To ward off the sadness that follows the glut

When fridges are empty and zippers won’t shut.




A Thanksgiving To-Do (Or Don’t) List: Ten Things To Do To Insure a Happy Thanksgiving 2

  1. Eat Pie. This comes first on the list for a reason. Pie doesn’t come along every day. If we leave it until the end, we could miss it or fail to appreciate its life-affirming qualities. Pie is life. Live it.
  2. Show up. Your family likes to see your face every once in a while. If you are a student, an athlete, a writer, a teacher, an up-and-comer, a commuter, a musician, a health-care person, a working parent or a chronic worrier, your tendency might be to use Thanksgiving Day as a “day off,” or, worse, a day to catch up on things that have spiraled out of control—like laundry or homework or grading or general sanity. But don’t do it. Not today. Treat Thanksgiving as a “day on.” Get up. Get dressed. Bring your game face and come ready to play. Eat pie. It’s therapeutic.
  3. Watch the Macy’s Parade. Snoopy is not flying over Manhattan for his health.
  4. Boycott Football. It’s dumb and it’s dangerous and it makes grown men cry. Where’s the fun in that?
  5. Nap. There’s nothing like a family snooze after a big meal. It’s what the people on the couch who say they’re watching football really plan to do anyway.
  6. Stay Out of the Stores. The Christmas Shopping Crazy Time will come soon enough. There will be plenty of time and plenty of stuff left to buy after Thanksgiving   If you want to get up at 4 AM on Friday morning, have fun with that. But shopping on Thanksgiving Day only rips families apart and insures that there’ll be an extra private jet under Sam Walton’s Christmas tree. Staying home means that  someday he’ll get the message and let all of his employees have the whole day off to be with their families and to get first dibs on the pie.
  7. Walk. How about a family stroll to clear the head, aid in digestion, fight the urge to shop and make room for more pie?
  8. Eat Real Whipped Cream. Better yet, whip it yourself. Sprinkle it with lemon zest or cinnamon or chocolate shots. What the hell. It’s just once a year. If it’s possible to improve upon the magnificence of pie, this is the way.
  9. Drink Wine. This should be self-explanatory.
  10. Do Not, Under Any Circumstances, Utter the Name of Any Politician, Elected Official, Past-Elected Official, Wanna-Be Elected Official, Failed Candidate, Alt-Right Crusader, Cabinet Member, Former Cabinet Member, White House Advisor, Former White House Advisor, Press Secretary, News Network, TV Talking Head or Alleged High Profile Sex Offender At Any Time, In Any Context or In Any Corner of Any Room. You will not win the argument that will ensue, no matter what side you’re on. (And, let’s face it, we’re all on a side these days.) You will only risk getting one of those beautiful pies in your face–and that would be a terrible thing to do to pie.

In summary, be nice. Be thankful. Enjoy your family. Appreciate the bounty. Eat. Exercise. Socialize. Have a little wine. Keep your wallet in your pocket and your big mouth shut. Oh, and don’t forget to save yourself a piece of pie for Friday. You’ll be glad you did.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!