The first Thanksgiving I can remember, I threw up five minutes before the annual family picture. I’m forever immortalized on Grandma’s wall with a napkin in my hand and secondhand mashed potatoes on my shoes.
The trend of bad Thanksgivings only continued from there — bad, of course, only in the warmest sense of the word. There was the year the dog took a dump in the back seat of the car, the year the apple pie fell out the back of it and, more recently, the time the bumper fell off the front. That year, we bought as many bags of sliced bread as rural Pennsylvania could supply, using the twist-ties as car parts and the bread as unrefined hors d’oeuvres.
Each year, though, there was always Thanksgiving. No matter where we were coming from or what state we made it to, the family was always there to faithfully gather around the table, drink too much wine and eat the cold mashed potatoes Grandma ordered from Wal-Mart.
Until this year. On Thursday, when 18 of the people I love most in this world sit down to feast, I’ll be the face on the iPad.
The British don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. They hardly even understand it. To them, it’s one of these enigmatic American traditions, something they hear about but never quite acknowledge.