Out of the Fog Blog

a thanksgiving chronicle

27 November 2009. Back in my old house in Exeter with the family, this is my turkey-centric day.

by Robert Perry

05:36 Sleeping in my old bedroom, I experience none of the early morning yipping drunk queens and wailing homeless who routinely gather at the corner of Market and Castro. Instead, I get awakened by a real live cock-a-doodle-doo from across the street. Who can sleep with that kind of racket?

06:19 Mom and Dad are in the kitchen working on dinner. Mother says that we always have more stuffing than we know what to do with. Dad says that we always run out.

06:40 While being prepped, our turkey is referenced with the pronouns he and him. His when possessive.

08:45 Mom and I read the Visalia Times-Delta and do the Jumble to discover what the jazz musicians did for Thanksgiving: They had a “YAM” SESSION.

09:02 Mom and I discuss putting up the Christmas tree tomorrow, but we need to go to Michaels in the morning to get some key decorations for my “blue-ice” masterpiece.

09:16 The Macy's Parade is on! I microwave water for my Starbucks VIA (I call Mother's coffee “tea”).

10:33 Shaved and showered. Now I smell like Japanese cherry blossom.

11:10 Mother gives me $17 for this year's last-ditch supermarket run: Paper dinner napkins, a can of evaporated milk (NOT sweetened condensed milk), a cheap baster (nothing over 5 bucks), and styrofoam cups. I delivered. Total cost: $6.15.

12:24 I finished the table setting. My napkin-wrapped knife and spoon tied with festive ribbon looks oddly like a voodoo doll an old boyfriend once got me from his trip to the Dominican Republic, but I don't think anyone will notice that.

13:16 Even though I have begged my mother to never answer the door in her moo-moo, our relatives arrive early and are greeted at the door by my mother in her moo-moo... oh, and curlers! She remarks that it's a housecoat.

14:11 Dinner is almost ready. Hey! The black-and-serve rolls came out brown this year.

14:24 Delicious dinner: Huge, piping hot turkey sliced and divided into white and dark meat plates; candied yams with melted marshmallow top; green beans with extra bacon; cream corn; mashed potatoes; Aunt Sue's orange Jell-O salad (adding even more marshmallows to the meal); and the cranberry sauce was served in the customary can-shaped fashion.

16:06 In the backyard, my nephews (age 2 and 4) wanted to play in a dirty plastic trash can. After checking for spiders, their dad says okay and Steven crawls in. I encourage the younger nephew to roll his brother around in it. Mother tells me to go help him push. “Use your foot, so you don't have to get dirty.” It's like an upsidedown carnival ride. Weeeee!

17:30 Pie. Razzleberry and pumpkin. And razzleberry again.

17:54 Grandma and I look through old family photos of the Easts and the McCarleys, some dated back to the 1910s and '20s.

20:04 Family begins to leave. Steven cries, and the family breaks out singing to him the holiday favorite, Santa Claus Is Coming to Town: “You better watch out, you better not cry...” Terrified, he stopped crying.

20:15 My sister Monica arrives for the Trivial Pursuit challenge. Monica and I versus Mom and Dad.

23:10 Monica and I win by correctly answering this question: In the country of Ivory Coast, what paper product is named for the American TV shows, Dallas and Santa Barbara? The answer: Toilet paper.

23:17 It was a happy Thanksgiving.

©2009 Chromozoa

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cranberry sauce

Photo source: Daniel Morrison, Flickr CC BY 2.0

Cranberry sauce, an American tradition.

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