Friday, November 14, 2008

It's official: I am crazy

I told my husband today I couldn't decide what I wanted to do. Part of me wanted to have a big Thanksgiving dinner and invite all our mish-mash of family from all sides. It's so fun, and welcoming and fills us with peace and love.

Another part of me said that was crazy and we have no business inviting everyone over here for Thanksgiving: We should just go to someone else's house. Then, when we're sick of all the dysfunction and peace and love, we can just go home to our own dysfunction, peace and love.

And then there was another part of me that said I don't even want to be anywhere around so let's flee for the hills like we did last year. Last Thanksgiving was magical. We fled to West Texas and IT SNOWED!

So this year when I dared to bring it up, my darling husband declared I must be suffering from multiple personality disorder, or something. Later this afternoon we caved and decided to throw a big bash at our house. One of my brothers is hosting his new girlfriend we like to call Miss Alaska, and he needs somewhere respectable to bring her to introduce her to the family, after all.

Just like every holiday, everyone will offer to bring something. And then I'll fret that we'll run out of food, which we actually did one Easter. I was horrified, given that I come from a long line of cooks and eaters who take great pride in cooking delicious food in copious quantities. We strive to create the best dish everyone raves about on any given holiday. But in recent years, I have discovered not every family is like mine, which can be good and bad, depending on how you look at it.

In recent years, I swear I have eaten fake mashed potatoes on Christmas (Jesus would not be happy about this, I know) and one year at Easter, someone brought a dozen boiled eggs, undecorated, with some chips. I promptly made deviled eggs, in a feeble attempt to fill everybody up.

It occurs to me that not everybody views a holiday gathering like my family does. Average, normal people don't realize you need to cook 10 pounds of potatoes or 5 pounds of green beans even though you're only one person. They don't know you can't bring a two-person serving to a 30-person gathering, or one dish if you've got five, big-eating kids.

Then there was the year everybody brought their dishes stone-cold and were all vying for stove and microwave space while patient old people and kids sat around, glassy-eyed and starving. Good times. The next year we employed subtle suggestions to at least bring the food at room temperature or in a crock pot or warmer. My father-in-law, who is the most precious man ever, always arrives just in the nick of time, takes over the kitchen and makes gravy. I've learned to just glide on outside for pre-dinner glass of wine.

How can people look at the same issue and see it so completely differently? It's baffling. I've thought about this a lot in the past few months, during the past election, when millions of voters did not share my insightful view. How can I be so right and they're just so blatantly, blindly wrong ? And how can they think the same thing about me when I'm so obviously right?

And then there was the time when I lovingly interjected there would be 30 people at the Thanksgiving gathering. And the invitee replied "well the recipe makes a 9x13 pan." End of discussion.

All of it is just fascinating. And here we go again.


Lavender Chick said...

I got a kick out of this post! I'm certain every person out there can relate.

Lastly, I will confirm for you - You are crazy.

Painted Groove Girl said...

Lavender Deb, don't you mean you need to "confirn" it for me?