Thanksgiving, a harvest holiday. An American favorite.
An Israeli, unfamiliar with the day, asked me what some of the traditions were. Simple, I replied, eat massive amounts of food until you fall asleep in front of the television.
I have some fond memories of the fare, the conversation, and the amazing pies from last year's event—possibly my final Thanksgiving in the U.S. for some time to come. Cheri, my ex's mom, has never disappointed when Turkey Day rolls around. Rumor has it that the secrets of the pie preparation have been passed onto her daughter, although I have yet to taste the tutelage.
I think I've gotten some people at the hostel worked up to try and create a mini-feast today. Even though Argentina lacks turkey—although the markets are saturated with cow, pig, chicken, fish, and small goats from the hills—I have a feeling we'll pull something fine together.
Common foods found on Thanksgiving Day include: Massive amounts of turkey with stuffing and/or honey-glazed ham, wine, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, regular mashed potatoes, corn, yams, peas and carrots, bread rolls, cranberry sauce, and green beans (or some type of cooked green veggie), with pie (pumpkin pie, apple pie, sweet potato pie, pecan pie) and/or ice cream. If I was in Oregon I'd also be begging for the Danish meatball dish my friend's mom does so well. Perhaps a little reminder via FedEx, Paula? (grin)
The son of the Queen of Danish Meatballs is Tristan, one of my closest friends. Back during our undergraduate years we started a little tradition called the Turkey Day Movie.
In slag, a turkey is one of the expressions used to describe a bad movie—sort of like a lemon is used to describe a damaged car.
New movies typically open in U.S. theatres on Friday, but since Thanksgiving always falls on a Thursday there's a special breed of movie that's selected for release on the proceeding Wednesday—those that are pure crap.
Thanksgiving holiday weekend movies are overly anticipated, and infamously bad. Back in 1999 Tristan and I, avid movie watchers—or at least I was before I started traveling full-time—created a little tradition of selecting the best (most entertaining, hyped, and/or appallingly stupid) movie of the bunch and watching it together. If we couldn't be together (often the case in later years) we'd watch it on Thanksgiving Day separately, and call each other afterwards.
2006 will make the eighth installment of our ongoing Turkey Day tradition.
To give you an idea of what I'm walking about, the turkeys watched in years past have been:
- 1999: End of Days
- 2000: Spy Game
- 2001: Unbreakable
- 2002: Solaris
- 2003: Timeline
- 2004: National Treasure
- 2005: The Ice Harvest
This year I was hoping to bend the rules a bit and make the new 007 movie our turkey (as a Bond lover I have my doubts about the film), but it turns out it won't be released in Rosario until December 7th. The release date delay is just too great to coordinate simultaneous viewing all the way down here in the southern hemisphere.
Tristan has selected Deja Vu to be our punishment of choice this year. I don't know anything about it except the plot outline—An ATF agent travels back in time to save a woman from being murdered, falling in love with her during the process—sounds pretty bad. It's a shame that it won't be out in this part of Argentina until 2007!
I'm still going to try and watch a bad movie today, though… Probably Saw III. As I've only been in a theatre once this year, I'm looking forward to it (regardless of the film).
Interestingly enough, in keeping with Argentina's tradition of late nights, some movies on Saturday actually start showing after 1:00 in the morning. Amazing.
Enjoy, USA—feel free to send any tasty leftovers to my hostel.