Happy Thanksgiving, here’s to the memories of the past


Cranberry sauce & Gravy
Image via Wikipedia

Happy Thanksgiving (hopefully that is not yet politically incorrect).  No doubt there is a society somewhere for the prevention of cruelty to turkeys, an animal so dumb it can’t be out in the rain because it will look and drown itself.

The older I get the more I think of holidays gone by especially when I was a child and a holiday did not involve any work on my part.  I now know that my mother and grandmother did a lot of work before, during and after each holiday meal – and no dishwasher mind you.  The men watched TV and the women did all the work, and that was the good old days, ah, not so much I’m thinking now.

Nevertheless I still miss those dinners and the tradition.  First thing on Thanksgiving was to watch the parade on television, that was after we got a TV, we switched channels from the parade in Detroit, to Philadelphia and New York with the main objective of seeing Santa three times and avoiding the boring singers from time to time.

Dinner was promptly at 3:00 PM as I remember (and I do mean promptly) with turkey carved at the table by my grandfather, stuffing, two kinds of cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, creamed onions, peas, sweet potatoes and dishes of olives and celery sticks at each end of the table.  And then there was pumpkin pie, mincemeat pie (no meat in mincemeat by the way) and as I recall someone didn’t eat either so they got an apple pie. 

One of us kids always got into trouble for something, spilling a glass of water that was in my grandmother’s best crystal glass, or eating all the olives before everyone had his or her share.  The great olive caper was an especially notable event which got my grandmother really upset, but given it was totally Doug’s fault I have only a limited memory of the event where we had to run to the store for replacement olives.

We always went to my mother’s, mother’s house for holidays because we had no place else to go. It may have been a routine some would find boring, but one I recall with great fondness.  In many ways they were the good old days, especially for us kids. 

But it’s time for new traditions and new memories and I get to live it all over again through my grandchildren…the good news is they don’t like olives, yet. Come to think of it I don’t think they eat mashed potatoes, stuffing, celery or mincemeat pie.  All I have to do is keep a close eye on the cranberries.

Wait until Christmas, I get the fruitcake all to myself.

One comment

  1. OMG, too funny. The only change I do remember is that I, YES I, was not the only one the enjoyed the little green condiments. I believe that I had a partner in crime RICHARD. I sure do remember going out and riding up and down Main St. East Orange looking for a store that may be open. Don’t forget that stores back then were CLOSED for Holidays. I think we finally found a place up in Orange that was open. I still have vision of the fire coming from grandma eyes when she was looking for the now consumed olives. I didn’t know if I should get more olives or a fire extinguisher to put out grandma fire. She was so even tempered that I don’t ever remember her so mad. Amazing what a little green item from over the ocean could cause such a fuss.
    Yes those were the good old days when families were all together and STORES were closed for the holidays.
    Now, some camp out in tents in front of stores so that they can be the first ones to enter a store, to spend money that they don’t have and end up on the 6 o’clock news. Almost like the first baby on tv after the first of the year. Well I guess that is a tradition that they will look back on. Hey look family, I am the asshole that camped out in the cold, 6 days before Black Friday, to buy something on credit and at a higher price that two weeks before Christmas. Any way, Hope ya’ll have a great Thanksgiving and see you before Christmas.

    Cuz (Love those Olives) Doug


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