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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Thanksgiving Faux Pas


The big Thanksgiving holiday is coming up here in the States. Many of us will be preparing big meals, family gatherings and other events. Here's some advice to help those of us prone to screwing things up. Avoid the following like carrot stuffing.*

  • When printing a menu, avoid abbreviating Turducken.

  • The Pilgrims were the English immigrants who befriended Native Americans at Thanksgiving. They were not just John Wayne's pals.

  • When slicing turkey, use a knife designed for simple meatcutting. A machete is overkill.

  • Serving ham at Thanksgiving is unusual. Serving ham sandwiches is just lazy.

  • Catfood is not an acceptable stuffing for turkey.

  • Grace for the meal should never be preceded or followed by slapfights.

  • When seating guests, never seat #BillCorbettDoppelgangers ahead of the real one. (It's a Twitter in-joke. Just avoid doing this. Especially if you're @Virginia Corbett.)

  • Traffic cones are inappropriate substitutes for cornucopia decorations.

  • When removing leftovers, never feed dogs carrots. Dogs are voracious omnivores, but they won't eat just any old crap.

  • Regardless of what Paula Deen says, there is a limit to how much butter one can use in meals. Let cardiac arrests at the table be your guide.

  • Gravy should never be eaten with the fingers. In an emergency though, one may sip directly from the bowl.

  • Use your finest china for Thanksgiving dinner. Paper plates are considered poor form. Flinging food and shouting "catch" should be reserved for leftovers.

  • After Thanksgiving meal - Burp: acceptable. Fart: not. Loudly announcing "I gotta take a dump": severely frowned upon.

  • Under no circumstances should anyone be allowed to wear the turkey.

  • The giblet gravy bowl should never be referred to as a barf bag, no matter how pink the gravy is.

  • Where helpings are concerned, seconds are recommended. Twelths are considered slightly excessive.

  • Electric carving knives are for turkeys, not for shaving toenails at the table.
  • Anyone making a turkey breast joke may be beaten about the head with the gravy ladel.

  • Real drinks should be offered as beverages, rather than just offering that there is "significant water on the moon."
  • While turkey does contain tryptophan and this can cause mild sleepiness, dozing in the mashed potatoes is frowned upon.

  • Although they are sometimes called drumsticks, turkey legs should never be used with actual drums.
  • Green beans should never be worn in the nostrils.

  • Never mix sweet potatoes and regular potatoes in one bowl. This could collapse the space-time continuum.
  • When helping oneself to a dish, always be sure to avoid knocking down elderly guests who may be between you and the food.

  • Whatever variation of succatash you serve, never, ever include bananas.
  • Avoid excessive chatter at the table about how big the Macy's Day parade balloons were, as this is boring nonsense.

  • Alcoholic beverages should never be served before the Thanksgiving meal, unless it truly sucks.
  • The "eating corn on the cob as though you were a typewriter" gag is at least 40 years out of date. Making the little bell sound at the end of each row of corn will only mark you as a social outcast.

  • All Pilgrim outfits must include pants.
  • Christmas decorations do not have to be put up right after the meal, no matter what your grandmother says.

  • Everything does not automatically go better with gravy at Thanksgiving. Iced tea, for example.
  • Watching the football games after a Thanksgiving meal is a time-honored tradition. Tackling grandmother and spiking her crocheting bag is not.

  • During Thanksgiving the terms "sweet potato" "wishbone" and "corn on the cob" are not to be used as euphemisms.
  • Do not slurp cranberry sauce from the plate. Only jello may be consumed in this way at the table.

  • In disfunctional family fights, avoid stabbing relatives with the same knife used to carve the turkey.
* Some of these originally appeared on Earl's Twitter account. (Some may yet appear there, depending on how lazy Earl is.) Follow him @earlfando! Follow Stew @stewmiller42! (Yes, Stew's still alive.) Follow Cakey the Jacked-Up Clown @cakeyclown!

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