First off, you need a table. King Arthur, in the underrated musical “Camelot,” brainstorms until he comes up with the Round Table, at which no knight can be exalted above any other. For me, a good table needs to have two or three leaves as to extend itself deep into the livers of those around it. You can imagine my (and Tessa’s) jubilation at finding an antique table at the furniture place in Millerton that has ten leaves and extends to a length of fourteen feet. That pretty much settles the argument; you’re having Thanksgiving at our house.
Tessa and I try to look like a Norman Rockwell painting, but I just look learning-disabled
Tessa and I do a little tug of war over the issues of Privacy vs. Gragariousness a lot, and I have to say, she puts up with a lot of my desire to gather tons of people in one spot. I think after our first successful “Men and Mayonnaise” party as freshmen I was hooked; I may have been an oversexed moron in college, but I threw some of the best parties the late eighties and early nineties ever saw. Shit, we just made a whole movie about a particularly depraved one.
Sometimes there are grumbles, but everyone always ends up having a blowout weekend at the farm, which is exactly the way we’d like it: a mixture of the steadfastness of age combined with the dipshit silliness of adolescence. Present at this year’s Thanksgiving: Tessa’s sister Michelle and my sister Michelle; Tessa’s brother-in-law Dennis; their children Katharine and Sam; my Mom; my sister’s best friend Anastasia; John Kelleran and his family; and even Chip drove up from North Carolina. We had a white borscht soup courtesy of John’s wife Justyna and her Polish mom (who cutely speaks ten words of English), my mom’s orange rolls (who cutely threaten to send you to the cardiologist), and an 18-pound turkey that was so golden and delicious as to be an absolute clich. I added a flair for the dramatic by stacking the dining room full of fifteen or so pumpkins I grew this summer, as we were too late to carve them for Halloween, and many toasts were hoisted aloft in the general spirit of desire to keep our loved ones as close to us as possible in this wicked world.
Later we played “Celebrity,” and Holden Caufield’s sister Phoebe came up twice.
our family says Happy Thanksgiving to my family 24 years ago (below) and yours too