To be one of the beautiful people
We had an early Thanksgiving at my dad’s wife’s daughters’ house. Did you get that family tree there? I really hope none of those people read this blog because there is no way I can’t tell you about it. This was the kind of thanksgiving they make comedic movies starring Chevy Chase and Vince Vaughn. It all started with a phone call from my father, literally as we turned on his street, wondering where we were. We were told to be there between 5:30 & 6:00. According to my phone it was 5:31. This is fairly typical so I didn’t feel much more than a rudimentary annoyance.
We got in the house and there were a ton of people. People I didn’t know, or necessarily even want to know. More people poured in and kept trickling in even after dinner. All told there must have been around twenty-five or thirty people there. People I’m not related to at all. Thanksgiving is historically stressful enough without having to have it with a herd of people you don’t care one whit about. That’s not true. I love my dad, and that’s what I kept reminding myself the entire evening.
I love my dad. I love my dad. It was like a mantra.
I was asked to bring deviled eggs. Thank god, because otherwise my kids would have eaten nothing but pickles and black olives the entire night. Otherwise we had turkey leather and instant mashed potatoes. But none of that is why I am compelled to tell you this story.
The entire cast of America’s Most Wanted and Cops were there. I know that sounds cliche and, as a writer, I strive to avoid cliche but I’m at a loss. Let me tell you about a few of them and then you decide.
THE DRUGGIES. Oh my, were these two wasted. I’m not sure of the relationship to anyone – but that could be said of almost everyone there. The only people I was 100% sure of were my brother and his wife. They were husband and wife or something. I couldn’t get too close, or rather I didn’t want to because of the smell. My Honey best described it as the “smell of unwashed ass”. Crude but remarkably apt. At one point, the woman staggered into the kitchen and trapped me there. When I finally escaped, with watering eyes and the beginning of a migraine, she followed me out to the living room where she confronted My Honey about his status as a fireman. She was completely positive she’d met my husband in church (!?!) and that he was a fireman. He is not, as much as I’d like it to be true to fulfill my own ridiculous fantasies, a fireman. Her husband was another thing entirely. He never spoke a single word the entire time we were there. Instead, he sat in a chair and did an excellent impression of Charles Manson. In fact, I wouldn’t have been the least bit surprised if he jumped up and used one of the plastic knives to carve a swastika in his forehead. It was all very unnerving. My Honey and I argued much of the way home about which was the worse scenario: to be trapped in a small space with a tweaker with a Cheshire Cat grin and unfocused eyes or to be stared down by Charles Manson all night. We still don’t have a clear winner.
THE BIKER DUDE. The chapter president of a well known biker club (I dare not use the word gang) was also present. I know he is president because his leather vest said so and I’m not of a mind to argue with a leather vest. Despite his mildly intimidating demeanor, he was actually quite funny, and My Honey and I chatted with him quite a bit. In fact, he showed me pictures of his chihuahuas from his phone. I know – good imagary right? Fairly early in the evening, before their cousins showed up, my kids complained about being bored. Mr. Biker offered to take my kids into the back room and teach them to assemble and disassemble automatic weapons in the dark. I said OK. Hey, they need to have skills. Besides, I want my kids to have lots of new experiences, and I don’t think their Episcopalian private school is going to teach them that particular talent. I kid. I only hope he was also kidding. I’m not sure though because he also repeatedly suggested we let them play with steak knives.
THE OTHERS There were others who I would have been better able to describe if I wasn’t so fascinated by the Druggies and the Bikers. I hate to sound elitist, but sometimes facts are facts. I left the party feeling super intelligent and very classy.
My brother and his wife were the first to flee. Chickens. Taking their lead we followed right behind. I love love love that this event was held on a school night. I was able to politely refuse any leftovers with the truth that I have to make two pies on Thursday. We’re going to my Mom-in-law’s for the real turkey day. I am confident it will be nowhere near as blog worthy as last night.