Things are still quiet here. Yesterday Marianne and I went to Sean's apartment, where he treated us to a Thanksgiving dinner "that couldn't be beat," as Arlo Guthrie used to put it. Only in retrospect did the above photo strike me as distinctly Goth.
And this morning, Marianne and I had a small adventure. We got up hours before our usual time, went to Micro Center with a short but pricey list of loss leaders in hand and stood in line for an hour before the store opened, went in, and bought them all. Because this is her first year of retirement, Marianne had never done this before.
I did, however, point out to her that the ungodly hour we had to rise in order to get the bargains was exactly the same time as she woke up for her commute to work a year ago.
What does Thanksgiving dinner have to have in order to be Thanksgiving dinner?
Over the years, we've asked this question of dozens of people. Our answer:
stuffing (the proper kind; none of your experimental foodie recipes allowed)
cranberry sauce (jelly, not whole berry)
midget sweet gherkin pickles
rolls (though personally I don't eat any during the meal; I save 'em for leftovers)
The smallest number required is zero, and a surprising number of folks adhere to that. We've known people who had sushi for Thanksgiving and thought it a perfectly satisfactory holiday meal. But the upper limit so far belongs to our friend Gail, who's of old New England stock (she's the sixth generation of her family to live in the house she now owns) and had to have something like twenty items, including three forms of cranberry sauce and four types of pie -- and the squash pie had to be cooked in a square pan!
It was only when she was an adult and had to cook the meal herself that Gail realized that the reason the squash pie was cooked in a square pan was that by that point all the round ones had been taken.