Productively spending the evening self-diagnosing whether or not I suffer a holiday-related form of synesthesia because Thanksgiving just seems to me to be Christmas . . . but orange-y.
Like when on a childhood vacation I discovered that the Netherlands’ Big Bird is, in fact, blue and not canary yellow, this recoloring of an old favorite is a bit discomforting, but despite the reservations, for my American wife’s sake, I decided to get into the spirit and make an effort with orange-y Christmas.
To that effect, I put myself in charge of the Thanksgiving dinner. To demonstrate my enthusiasm, I toyed with a new addition to this year’s menu – cherry cola salad. A southern favorite (apparently – though I am raising an eyebrow as I type that. I’m sure these tales of jello salads are just damn Yankee lies), Bill Clinton insisted it be served at the White House Thanksgiving dinner during his presidency. I found a recipe online – cherry pie filling, tinned pineapples, cherry jello and a can of coke – it convinced me that I really needn’t be making this dish, no one would be thanking me if I did; stomach won out over curiosity.
While the turkey cooked, I, like a good little American, watched A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. I believe this is one of the things expected of you on orange-y Christmas. While I liked Snoopy as a child, and I’m aware Jonathan Franzen may cut me and cut me bad for the following view, but I just don’t see the appeal of watching a ten-year-old-boy with clear depressive tendencies suffer from anxiety attacks*. Charlie Brown is in clear need of professional psychiatric help rather than Lucy who, as a ten-year-old schoolgirl, is patently unqualified to practice. No wonder so many American children are being prescribed antidepressants when every holiday in the calendar involves the trauma of having to sit through a Peanuts special.
Also, Woodstock eating turkey is just wrong. He’ll end up with a prion disease.
*Although it has to be said that Charlie Brown’s existential angst coupled with the jazz soundtrack give the cartoon a certain New Wave feel to it.