While the country settles into the acceptance that reality is what it is, American families are preparing themselves for that most hallowed and stressful of this nation’s traditions: Thanksgiving. Flights are booked, turkeys are getting goosed, and pharmacies across the nation are unloading Halloween candy at deep deep discounts.
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As the seasonal dread starts to bubble up and we prepare for the yearly nag about how infrequently we call our moms, the Plantain has written a script to help you brace for the love/hate that is an annual family get together. Just memorize your line, put on your best face, and let it all flow over you:
Editor’s Note: It has been brought to our attention that this “script” really works best if you’re coming from a middle-class white, probably Jewish, but not like really Jewish family. You know, the good type of Jewish where you get to both feel bad about yourself and eat bacon.
Everyone is seated a little too cramped around the table. There are three sets of Pilgrim Salt and Pepper shakers because your Mother keeps forgetting she bought the same set from Publix the last two years. Is her forgetfulness a funny quirk or a cause of concern as she ages, you wonder.
Mom: (clinging to the delusion that everyone is here because they want to be) Well, isn't this wonderful?
Dad: (drunk (off of his own delusions that he is the respected paterfamilias and also alcohol)) Sure is.
Your Millennial Sister Karen but who pronounces it “Ka-Rin” for some reasons and really loves correcting people who mispronounce her name by pronouncing it correctly: This whole holiday is based founded on a tragedy, you know. Why should we celebrate the deaths of Native Americans? Standing Rock, you know. Standing Rock.
Racist Uncle Dan: (too loudly) They had their chance. This is Trump’s America now!
Bubbe Ruth: (old) Where’s poppa?
Racist Uncle Dan: (too loudly, but lovingly) He died six years ago of bowel obstruction, Mom!
Free Market Uncle Ted: I sure do miss him, but I am thankful for the vast inheritance he left me.
Free Market Uncle Ted’s Evangelical Wife Susan: (too sweetly) You say that every year, honey. This year, for a change, I’m thankful for the defunding of Planned Satanhood. And for Jesus. Thanks, Jesus!
Jesus (telepathically from Christian Heaven to Susan) You’re welcome, My child.
Free Market Uncle Ted’s Evangelical Wife Aunt Susan: (out loud) You got it, big guy!
Bubbe Eileen: (old) Who is she talking to?
Free Market Uncle Ted: Jesus Christ.
Bubbe Eileen: (spits three times) Don’t say his name! It’s a shonde!
Bubbe Ruth (old) Is Shonda here? She steals from me!
Jesus (telepathically from Christian Heaven to Bubbe Eileen) You’ll get yours soon enough, ya old coot.
Hitler (also in Christian Heaven, but directly to Jesus) Jesus honey, come back to the sand pit! It’s your serve!
Jesus (to Hitler): Coming! Hey Addy, did you see they are already starting to celebrate my birthday on earth! You seem to be making a comeback as well!
[Back on earth]
Your Millennial Sister "Ka-rin": Aunt Susan- you said that LAST year! See? I Tweeted all about it. (Shows phone to everyone) SEE?? “#Thankshitty2016: Crazy Aunt Susan is all Jesus-y. #SurpriseSurprise #KillMe.”
Free Market Uncle Ted’s Evangelical Wife Susan: (too sweetly) Now "Karen", don’t be a cunt.
Your Millennial Sister: It’s “Ka-rin”!
Mom: “Ka-rin”! You get that thing away from the dinner table- you know the rules! Listen to your father! (Smacks Dad’s shoulder)
Dad: (drunk) Sure is.
Racist Uncle Dan: Someone pass me the turkey and potatoes and gravy and stuffing.
Free Market Uncle Ted: So who wants to talk about that election, huh?
Collective sighs of varying consistency around the table.
Mom: (sweetly) I hear Sarah Palin’s back. How about that? Tina Fey must be happy.
Your Millennial Sister: (hyperventilating rage) Can you believe this insanity? Trump’s going to oppress every minority and popularize chauvinism and kill our rights to free speech and deregulate every environmental protection every because he's convinced climate change is a hoax!
Free Market Uncle Ted: But he is great for Israel!
Your Millennial Sister: It's the Apocalypse!
Jesus (telepathically from Christian Heaven to Susan) The rapture isn’t for another 11 years, Sue. You’re good.
Evangelical Aunt Susan: (knowingly) Don’t be so dramatic, “Car-ren”? This isn’t the apocalypse.
Hitler (to Jesus in Christian Heaven): Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ! Get your head in the game. Brittany Murphy and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are one set away from match point!
[Back on Earth]
Bubbe Ruth: (old) Is Shonda here, yet? She steals from me, you know.
Dad: (drunk) Sure is.
Racist Uncle Ted: Not for nothing, but America won’t be great again until the Mexicans and Kurdish and Zoroastrians and those goddamned Cameroons are all--
You (interrupting): If you all will excuse me, I’m just going to go celebrate marijuana's legalization. I’ll be back in a few minutes, save me some yams!
Everyone from the Plantain wishes you the fortitude to survive Thanksgiving and the upcoming War on Christmas.