Matthew's Foray into Blogging

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

It’s All About the Food, or The True Meaning of Thanksgiving

This will come as no great revelation, but Thanksgiving is all about the food. That is the consensus among the people to whom I speak. Of course, giving thanks underlies the observance of Thanksgiving. “The most common view of its origin is that it was to give thanks to (the Judeo-Christian) God for the bounty of the autumn harvest,” states the ever-reliable Wikipedia. Thanksgiving is also a time to gather with family. (Not everyone thinks this is a good thing.)

We have a tradition (a tradition going back only a few years, but I’ll call it a tradition nonetheless) of my immediate family and a few of my dad’s siblings and their families gathering at a particular aunt’s house for the day of giving thanks, which is marked by (what else?) consuming a sizeable meal. However, we in my immediate family also prepare our own traditional Thanksgiving meal, which we enjoy in the days following the fourth Thursday in November. The food at my aunt’s house is good, but we would not want to miss out on our own favorites – a free-range organic bird, homemade cranberry sauce, rolls made from scratch, homemade pies, and fresh vegetables – and it supplies us with our own leftovers, which are almost as important as the meal on the big day itself. In fact, we enjoy this feast in stages over a couple of days, as it would be too much to consume all at once. We do not make known to our relatives this second feast, lest they think their food is not good enough for us. I think this further evidences that it is all about the food.

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