Monday, November 21, 2005

Holiday Hiatus

Well folks, it’s that time of year again…time to gather ‘round the table with family and friends and stuff yourself with food until you can move only just enough to make it to the couch, where you spend the rest of the day watching/not watching football and other various holiday entertainment.

And this is where I leave you for a few days; But not without a holiday memory....

When we were kids, Thanksgiving Day was spent at Mimi and Papa’s house, about 45 minutes away from our home in Tiny-Town. They had a great house with lots of trees in the yard, lots of sidewalk to ride bicycles on, and infinitely more acorns than we could throw at each other. So all the cousins would arrive mid-morning, and we’d have to waste away until “dinner” was ready around the unholy hour of 2pm. We were expected to entertain ourselves and stay out of the kitchen. This should have been easy, considering the vast variety of stuff at her house, including something we did not have: cable television.

So, those of us who arrived early in the day (we always got there before everybody else) would plant ourselves in front of the TV in the living room, happily watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and other such nonsense. That is, until everyone else arrived and the living room TV had to be relinquished to football. That is when we were banished. I know you’re thinking, “Banished? Surely it can’t be that bad. You’re just being dramatic.” But yes, yes it was that bad.

You see, all of us “big” kids were sent to the garage. You know, where cars are usually kept. Now, I must admit that Papa’s garage is unlike any other you have ever seen. You could probably eat off of his garage floor and acquire no more germs than off of a not-so-clean plate fresh from the dishwasher, and they did pull the cars out into the driveway for us. How thoughtful. Anyway, there we were provided with a few metal folding chairs, a card table, a small space-heater, and a portable black and white TV with a screen the size of a matchbox. This is where we were expected to happily while away the time, waiting hours upon hours for the succulent feast of the traditional turkey, deviled eggs, and blueberry salad, to be washed down with Coke, yes, the Real Thing.

So there we are, exiled to the cold, dim garage, huddled around a space heater and a miniscule black and white TV while the “little” kids are playing inside with their toys, all toasty warm. We would find any excuse to come out of the garage we could think of…”I need to get a drink”…”I need to use the bathroom”…”My toes are numb”…”Is there anything to eat?”…”I can’t feel anything below my waist”…you name it, we thought of it. And if that weren’t bad enough, when the food was finally ready, we had to eat in the garage! That’s right…we had to eat our long awaited Thanksgiving feast in the garage. At some point we were allowed back into the house to thaw ourselves out, and by that time we didn’t care what we had to do – as long as we could be in a place with actual heat. Plus, we were grating on each other’s nerves in a 26 x 26 garage. Sure, that seems big, but put a bunch of cold, starving cousins in there for hours, and you’ve got yourself the original Survivor.

So, now when we go to Mimi and Papa’s for Thanksgiving, there are still kids running around all over the place. And you know what? The parents and grandparents have become rather soft-hearted in their old age. Because rarely are the kids exiled to the garage; they get to go to the office, where there’s a TV with cable, computer with internet, and oh yeah, heat. And when they are occasionally sent to the garage, there’s a wall-mounted heater to keep them toasty warm.

Kids these days…Send ‘em to the garage, I say! Pin It


  1. Well, there are always sacrifices to be made during the holiday season...and your childhood was just preparation for ADULTHOOD! If you are lucky, you always get to spend the holidays in uncomfortable circumstances, with family members in close proximity, and no way to get out!
    I can't wait!!!I love the price you have to pay to eat turkey and blueberry salad!

  2. hey, we still have to go to the garage to eat thanks. and it's still cold. But last year Ashten did pick up half of his bluberry salad off the floor and ate it... didn't have a speck of dirt on it.

  3. one question about your last post.
    what does Tchaikovsky mean? Lol.

  4. Guess Mom needs to get out the classical cds - to educate the younger crowd. Isn't it funny how everyone has a different bent...and how times change...and how something that was so normal years ago is foreign now. Amazing.

  5. You need to update again. I'm getting bored.