18 November 2010

No Tonto in Thanksgiving

I feel so bad for Thanksgiving. Why do we neglect such an important holiday? Doesn’t anyone remember the huge significance for the pilgrims at Plymouth, struggling to survive that first winter of 1620? Remember that they had such a hard time getting crops to grow in their new land? Remember how the friendly tribe of Indians, the Wampanoag tribe, helped them in their troubles? What a feast that must have been! Imagine sitting at the tables carved from large trees, chomping rows of Maize? Our culture is too quick to forget, to quick to move forward to Christmas.

Thanksgiving was previously celebrated on the last Thursday of the month, as decreed by Abraham Lincoln when he declared it a National holiday. However, in 1939, President Roosevelt changed it to be observed on the fourth Thursday, because it was to overshadowed by Christmas. See, even then the importance of Thanksgiving was realized, and the overshadowing of Christmas was addressed. Would Chief Massasoit still allow his loyal tribe members to offer assistance if he could look into our day and see that we now trample it down? Would Mayor William Bradford be proud of his heritage if he knew our actions?

And what of Thanksgiving itself? It must have some feelings, right? So trampled, so insignificant. We just speed past Thanksgiving to get to the shopping deals of the next morning. We play Christmas music as soon as our bellies are stuffed with Halloween Candy. Well, not me. I for one look forward to the smashed potatoes. And Christmas carols, though I love them, stay silent until December 1.

Thanksgiving is such a great day to stick it to PETA also. Homer and Bart said it best when they sang, “You Don’t Win Friends With Salad.” With so much to be Thankful for, I am abhorred that we treat Thanksgiving like the last kid picked at recess.

There is so much good about Thanksgiving. Turkey. Growing Pains reruns. Smashed Potatoes. Football games. Messing up someone else's house. Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving special.
Time with family. Stuffing yourself so full that you can do no more than lay on the couch. Pumpkin Pie. Homemade rolls. Leftovers. 16 extra pounds to insulate ourselves for winter. I love Thanksgiving. No animals were hurt during this post. (But they are gonna be.)