Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Freedom From Want: Chicken N' Beer

 Ahhh, Thanksgiving.

The nice cool temperatures, the look of children at the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, the smell of great food. If it weren't for the fact that everything else was so messed up about the holiday, it would be the perfect day. First up, the Whites took the land from the Native Americans and royally screwed them from that point on. Now when it's celebrated, families gather around the table only to destroy relations forever, someone has to say something to piss off somebody in the family after a few slices of turkey, which contains tryptophan, which is a chemical that makes folks sleepy and could cause them to do some dumb crap.

You've seen it before, because it may have happened at your own home. You get the third degree from the 'rents about your future and you tell them that you plan on being a stand up comic one day and your father thinks that you should stick with the family business and become a television repairman because that what he does and he's busted his ass for years to put food on the table and you tell him you don't want to sweat behind a TV and nobody fixes them anymore anyway, so he tells you that you are no son of his and you should jut get up from the table and just get the Hell out of his house for you are an ungrateful bastard and you tell him he can take that turkey leg and sit on it and you leave.

At least, that's how I remember it. I was drunk from the turkey when it happened. It could have been worse. There could have been guns involved, I dunno. My family is friggin' nuts like that.

All of this makes one wonder, what should one do for Thanksgiving when there's no Thanksgiving around? I would think that the average reader of this little piece wouldn't have the chance or opportunity to spend time with the family and won't have the chance to leave the Coastal Empire without the chance to celebrate. For those who've never been in Savannah for the holiday season and is used to a cold, crisp season, well you can just let that go right now. I'll bet you a penny that the temperature gets between sixty and seventy degrees, so other than the streets being quieter than normal it won't feel like your normal holiday. After that has mulled in your head, what should you do then? Well, that is why TV's Sam Johnson in here, kiddo. I got a few ideas that could ensure you have a safe and happy holiday.

ONE: Stock up now. If you go to the grocery store now or at least the night before Thanksgiving and just pick up a few things (turkey breasts, can of cranberry sauce, Stove Top Stuffing, can of veggies of your choosing, pumpkin/sweet potato pie), you should be in the clear. However, this magazine is free and you picked it up from inside The King's Inn or The Jinx or someplace, which means you're cheap and don't like to pay for anything, sooooo…

TWO: Mooch. Look, it is what it is. Somebody's got to be cooking something that day and you just want a plate of green bean casserole (someone tell me why that is a staple in Caucasian homes, please), so the best thing to do is make friends fast if you have none, so you need to do what you need to do to get your Food Jones on. Do this at least one month ahead of time at your local watering hole for your best opportunity and a good seat at the table. Once you're there however, there could be some dysfunction served along with the mashed potatoes, so be warned now before taking this step.

Also, you may have to date below your caste on order to get a good meal. I knew a guy once who dated a girl just to get a hold of her infamous red velvet cake that she only made on Thanksgiving and the moment he finished his slice he told her it was the greatestcake he had ever had and dropped her like a Hot Pocket fresh out of the microwave. Sure, it's cruel and inhumane to dump someone during the holidays, but you gotta eat and there is nothing that is going to come between you and red velvet cake now, is there? By the way, both sexes count in this, so ladies take heed. If his momma cooks that day, dump him on Black Friday.

THREE: Make a party of it. That may be your best bet right there. If you have a group of friends that won't be able to make it to their families that day, then get them together for one big ol' Turkey Day Jammie-Jam. Don't get dressed up because you already know these slackers and are in the same boat as them. Start the day in pajamas with the gang coming over while the parade is on and have some snacks and stuff while the turkey cooks. Everyone volunteers to bring at least one dish enjoy so you don't have to do all the cooking. Hell, if it's your place then you do the bird and they can bring all the sides they want.

Or better still, do what some friends and I did last year and have a chicken and beer party that day. Instead of turkey, a bunch of us got a few boxes of chicken, biscuits and sides from Bojangles on Derene (they were the only chicken joint open that day, so you may not get that lucky), stocked up on a few cases the night before and celebrated the day. By the time it was over, could not leave Wilmington Island, but that was because someone brought a special "desert" just for that night. Good times, good times for all…

FOUR: Wait till the next day. Somebody has to have leftovers on Friday. Sit down, shut up and on the day after, they'll be sick of looking at it clog up the refrigerator and you shall be rewarded. It's kind of like mooching, 'cept different.

I hope that these tips serve you well during the Thanksgiving holiday. These are also good during Christmas, Chanukah and any holiday where lots of food is served (Kwanza never has any good food). As for my plans for the day, I'm going to go with number two as I'll probably have to work that day and I know that my sister-in-law is cooking that day for my brother and their family and they'll have banana pudding for desert and not a green bean casserole in site

7 comments:

Ivan G Shreve Jr said...

Tell you what...you explain to me why black folk have mac & cheese for Thanksgiving, and I'll reveal the secret of why white folk eat green bean casserole.

Happy Thanksgiving, you turkey...

Anonymous said...

Told you it was a classic and it should be reprinted EVERY Thanksgiving!!

Have a great Thanksgiving and enjoy the day off.

Sam said...

Ivan,

It's because the green bean casserole sucked the first time we had it.

SwanShadow said...

I thought the whole point of you living in Savannah was that Paula Deen came to your house and cooked you Thanksgiving dinner. I am totally disillusioned to learn that doesn't happen.

Ivan G Shreve Jr said...

Swan, the man can't even enjoy the simple pleasures of a green bean caaserole*--what makes you think his palate could digest anything from Lady & Sons^^?

*For the record, I don't like green bean casserole at all. I just like tweaking Brother Sam about it.

**I don't like Paula Dean's cuisine, either. Way too overpriced.

Sam said...

AHEM....

Paula had a contest to fix your meal and gave away the grand prize yesterday so it does happen, Uncle Swan.

As for "Charlie" Screve over there, if you've never had Southern cuisine and you want a starter, go to Paula's. But if you really want get down to it, I know a few places that could put her to true shame and I'd bet she's admit to it. You would too if you'd get that cheese blotch off of your tee shirt and go look for some real food and stop watching "Rango"! HA!

HouseT said...

Ah, phooey. Everyone knows that Paula Deen is just the commercial face of "down home cooking" for our area, and even then she means more to visitors than she does to all of the locals. She's basically the Colonel Sanders of our time.

Besides, I wouldn't want her cooking for me, anyway. have you seen her on TV? She's always licking her fingers and utensils and everything. Bleh!