OPEN THREAD: Welcome To Thanksgiving Headquarters, Population Weirdos

Happy Thanksgivingish Time, Straddlers! Maybe you’re going home but not coming out, maybe you’re bringing a girl home for the first time, maybe you’re hitting your family with a lesbian vegan double-whammy or maybe you’re preparing Frozen Jellied Turkey Vegetable Salad! Maybe you’re pre-partying with Xanax in anticipation of having a panic attack at Kohl’s on Black Friday. Maybe you’re having a fantastic Friendsgiving where something is gluten-free, something else is vegan, and something else contains marijuana!

A diverse arrangement of dietary situations et al #happyholigays

A photo posted by riese (@autowin) on

Whatever you’re doing, this is your safe space to share all your Thanksgiving feelings all weekend long. How many potato products do you plan to consume? Has anybody tried to shame you for being passionate about green bean casserole? Have you had to listen to any relatives endorse Donald Trump, Ben Carson, defunding Planned Parenthood, or turning away Syrian refugees?

Autostraddle’s very first holiday open thread EVER happened on Thanksgiving 2009, when your relatives were very angry about Adam Lambert, very excited about Glenn Beck, and at least one young woman’s cousin insisted she was a boy named “Andy” for the entire meal. Furthermore, Robin drank pink wine from a box with her grandmother who told her that she doesn’t like vegetables because they are “sexless.” I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a PERFECT Thanksgiving to me.

I hosted that 2009 Open Thread ’cause I spent the day alone in my apartment, working. I’ve never been a huge fan of Thanksgiving, really, because it’s an entire holiday centered on what is essentially just a large meal that makes everybody feel terrible afterwards. But you grow up and these things start making sense — how it’s the calendar forcing you to face your friends or family or make an occasion out of a day. You eat things that remind you of things you’ve eaten before, you place a value on togetherness for its own sake.

Thanksgiving: a time to get really ambitious about what you are capable of cooking

Thanksgiving: a time to get really ambitious about what you are capable of cooking

Last year, my fiancé Abby and I had a Friendsgiving in California — ten or fifteen A-Camp friends in one small apartment, ranking Disney movies, playing Scattergories, taking naps, being quiet sometimes and too loud at other times. The four years prior I’d been with my then-girlfriend Marni — twice we had Bren and Carrie over and Carrie always made an amazing dessert, once Haviland and her future fiancé Ashley came up from Los Angeles and everybody sang Indigo Girls and told their life stories. In 2011 we went to a Friendsgiving celebration in Oakland with one wonderful friend and also a bunch of really wonderful people who weren’t really my friends and didn’t want to be, and I mostly felt lonely and sad that I wasn’t clicking with any of these new people in California and would I ever? And was she ready to go home yet? I remember that cold porch, everybody laughing, somebody playing guitar, and a cave in my stomach as big as the happiness I wanted to feel.

In New York, Thanksgiving was haphazardly celebrated, but usually with Haviland, and we’d make a video, or one of us would have a mental breakdown. One year my brother flew in from New Orleans with a dish of macaroni and cheese on his lap and I wanted him to think my life was cool so I invited tons of friends over  — one-third sex workers, one-third actress/model/singer aspirants, one-third both — and, of course, Haviland, and also the girl I was dating. I was nervous about it ’cause my brother had never seen me with a girl before but there she was and it was okay and she slept over and we all managed to live through the night into the next day.

In 2005, in East Harlem, I made an entire Thanksgiving dinner for a friend I barely knew. In 2004 I was alone all day, and my boyfriend brought me a plate at night after he got off work.

So then, 2003. 2003 I was still in college, in Michigan, so that must have been the last time I spent Thanskgiving in Ohio, which’s the place I spent most Thanksgivings growing up, and where I’m going this year, too, with Abby. It’s where most of my Dad’s family still lives. How did it become 12 years since I’ve done what I was raised to feel was The Thanksgiving Tradition? I’m excited to be there, and excited to be there with Abby.

Thanksgiving has become one of those holidays you don’t always have to go “home” for anymore, which means sometimes we have some really random Thanksgivings where we do things that are entirely unrelated to Thanksgiving. I think we’ve also reached a point in society where we realize that chaotic holiday air travel is the rule, not the exception, and that it might be best to avoid it altogether.

Thanksgiving: Not Necessarily a Time for Family

Thanksgiving: Not Necessarily a Time for Family

I think my weirdest Thanksgiving was the one in 2005, where I had over that fairly new friend I’d met at my internship. We’d figured out that neither of us had plans, and so what the hell, let’s do Thanksgiving together! I legit prepared a whole Thanksgiving feast — in disposable aluminum pans, as I recall — for two people. She was cool, but about as awkward as me, so, eventually we resigned to watching The L Word on DVD. Although there’d never been any sexual energy between us, I remember thinking maybe we should just make out, so that it makes sense that we’re both here. (We didn’t.) That’s when I learned it’s better to have Thanksgiving alone than with somebody you barely know, ’cause it’s hella awkward.

Awkward Thanksgivings abound, y’all. Like the year I brought my boyfriend with me to Ohio. I didn’t really like him anymore. He kept complaining that my Grandpa wouldn’t stop talking to him, which is against the Golden Rule Of Meeting Relatives (I can talk shit about my family, but you cannot talk shit about my family!), and he made us leave on Thanksgiving so we could get up at 4 AM the next day to go to Best Buy. Or the year I was visiting friends in New York, and one of our friends apparently got her period at night and bled all over the host’s roommate’s bed and was so embarrassed about it that she got up, washed the sheets, and then took a train back home before we woke up?

What is your weirdest / most bizarre / most awkward Thanksgiving memory? Or your funniest? Did your Thanksgiving ever involve your two older cousins who knew how to do makeup and be girls giving you a makeover, like mine did in 1989?



So tell me your stories! Tell me stories about this year, last year, a million years ago, or about a different holiday if your country doesn’t celebrate this one! Tell me about heartwarming traditions and weird ones! Tell me every weird thing a relative says to you within the next 72 hours! TELL ME EVERYTHING. What’s your favorite kind of pie? I’m just wondering!

Is it Frosty Orange pie? BE honest.

Is it Frosty Prune pie? Be honest.

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3182 articles for us.


  1. Tis the season to remember why you hate your extended family.Hateful ass, misogynistic ass, homophobic ass jackasses. I’m just going for the food.

  2. I think the best part of Thanksgiving is remembering I am an adult who doesn’t have to go home. Like I can see the family I love and trust at any time, I don’t need to mess around with jerky extended family because I am (sometimes) in control! And my folks get it which is rad! They also live verrrry far away so it’s just cheaper to see them NOT during holidays (yay trips to Alaska in February…)

    THIS YEAR though, I am spending thanksgiving in my home of choice with my family of choice: My local gay dive bar The 19 (the oldest gay bar in Minneapolis!)

    I am simultaneously learning more about lesbians and the history of gay bars by reading Baby You Are My Religion. Recommended if anyone can get their hands on it.

  3. I don’t have a good relationship with everyone in my family, but I do enjoy bringing people over and shocking them with the food we prepare. You mean you’ve never had dove, rabbit, wild turkey, deer, wild hog, or squirrel before? Get ready for a treat! (except this year my mom told me I had to pick between the dove and the squirrel…I chose dove)

    • Isn’t squirrel almost more work than it’s worth? Like, I grew up hunting (despite having TERRIBLE luck whenever I went out with my dad as a kid) so I’ve had the deer and turkey and pheasant and goose (goose is TERRIBLE), but squirrel was the one thing my dad+his hunting buddies were always “nah”. We don’t get wild hog up this way, and I don’t think there’s a dove season (I could be wrong).

  4. This might be the first year we don’t have Thanksgiving at my house and I am beyond excited. My parents have never been this calm around the holidays and we just keep eating out and watching Netflix and laughing a lot, it’s been fantastic.

    I’m not the best at holidays but ever since I was little, I would just leave when it got to be too much and my family wouldn’t notice til like two hours later, so even though they give me anxiety, it’s never been too terrible because I always had a chance to leave.

    I’m real thankful that I don’t have to do it this year (I’m not 100% sure they’re not coming my family would be the one to show up on our doorstep when we have nothing cooked/planned) because I’m still trying to process my feelings by allowing myself to actually feel them? from Jessica Jones because I’m overwhelmed and need to write or draw or something cause essays are the best way to relieve stress/anxiety/whatever this is apparently. But someone in a support group has offered to go write back and forth with me about it so it feel a lot more manageable now!

    My favorite kind of pie used to be chocolate but now it’s sweet potato and ever since I’ve seen Patti Pies

    (I watch it like twice a day to keep myself happy) I want one of those!

    I think the hardest Thanksgiving was last year, cause my grandma has dementia and she was as far from herself as I’d ever seen her up until then. But, usually, even though someone’s feelings are bound to get hurt at some point, they’re usually okay because my family are grade A storytellers and even though I’ve heard some of them a million times, it always feels like I’m hearing it for the first time and that’s a great feeling. And also they’re just funny as shit.

    Hope you all have great holiday if you celebrate and great days if you don’t!

  5. I’m driving 4 hours to spend thanksgiving with my parents (my brother and his wife bailed at the last minute). So I’m making an entire vegetarian feast myself (for nonvegetarian parents) while I debate whether or not this is a good time to come out to them as bi (it’s really probably not) and simultaneously hoping that my new super short asymmetrical haircut, affinity for flannels, and experiment in growing out my armpit hair doesn’t give me away. I’m a little stressed. Also I feel very guilty for leaving my cat alone for three days “on a holiday” even though she’s a cat and doesn’t know she’s alone on a holiday.

    • Good luck with the drive AND the ‘I am A Fellow Straight Person’ routine! If anyone asks about the armpit hair, just tell them you’re growing your winter coat for the cold months to come!

  6. Pumpkin samosas were a hit at the company potluck!

    I started with onions, carrots, cooked with salt, garlic, ginger, and curry. (powder forms for the last 3)
    Then I added roasted sugar pumpkin. (You could probably use unroasted pumpkin cubes, I just roasted to not have to peel the skin) Added more of above spices. Added sugar. Added fresh cilantro.
    Did not add the peas I specifically bought for this. (EPIC FAIL)
    Kept cooking and stirring to boil out as much water as possible. Also added flour and cornstarch to soak up some water.
    Overall, doing this filling took ~2 hours, so like when I did something similar to make breakfast burrito filling, (potato, onion, egg, spinach, cilantro, salt, garlic, black pepper) the onions caramelized.

    Then I stuffed them in lumpia/spring roll wrappers, in triangle configuration. (look up “samosa spring roll wrapper” on youtube) Dipped in oil, baked at 450F in a glass pan. (Anything less than 450F won’t fully crisp the wrapper) DO NOT REFRIGERATE or they will go squishy and wrappers will lose their crispiness. This part took 3-4 hours, but partly because I started with a lower oven temp.
    Even then, most of them had filling busting out of some parts, (as most attempts to use squash for filling does) but they will still hold together and be delicious.

    Next time I’ll try mixing in some sweet potato/yams to increase the solid-ness of the filling.

    I didn’t use a particular recipe, but you can find some by searching “pumpkin samosa” online.

      • It turns out cilantro is like this amazing magic ingredient to complement spicy heat, so that even people who are normally spice lightweights (like me!) can get the full flavor.

        The salt and sugar was also key in this one to really bring out the pumpkin flavor. Don’t know how this will interact with a mix including sweet potatoes, or how adding cinnamon might interact with the curry. But I guess I was going more for East Asian curry flavor than South Asian.

        (To try: variant with cheese cubes?)

        • I’ve used roasted sweet potatoes in a similar fashion; they work super well and totally don’t need added sugar!

    • Sounds delicious! Saving this recipe!

      I like to make mini-dumplings in wonton wrappers. I use an equal mix of ricotta & plain canned pumpkin, plus a dash of salt/pepper & nutmeg. Then I fry them in butter & drown them in plum sauce from the Asian supermarket down the road.

  7. hi kittens,

    I am having a thanksgiving at my brother + his fiance’s house, and gf showing up later and whisking me back home before it gets super late.

    also, we’ve been together 5 years and our periods literally only just synced, and this week is shark week, so I may break a chair if people get too shitty, but probably it’ll be fine/my mom has been making these drinks called ‘flannels’ which are cozy cider + cognac cocktails/I’ve been a cranky lesbian at family gatherings for many years, and for the most part they’re ok these days, though for years it was incredibly painful /I felt really invisible and like nobody gave a shit how I felt and I would come home and cry. these days, it ranges from pleasant to irritating, mostly.

    but I’m finishing this book called ‘fans of the impossible life’ which is very prototypical queer YA of the last 5 years with a bunch of manic pixie dream teens who are bffs that kiss and smear glitter on each other and whatever and then am moving on to ‘the power of habit’ which is supposed to be a really good self-helpy book.

    I don’t have really strong thanksgiving memories? People just eat a lot, and sometimes we go for a walk. My aunt used to adorably set us up to play monopoly, and my fondest memory of that is that she would always let me be the little terrier even when younger kids were playing who were like I WANT TO BE THE DOG.

    also gf is making herbed biscuits for me to take to my brothers and I was like “Babe you should do exactly what you want but also that is more work for you, your biscuits are very good, it is up to you” and she gave me a short lecture about how cooking on holidays is a competition and she wanted a skin in the game and I was like “Yeah I always bring the salad because I don’t care what these chumps think of my cooking, they just care if there’s enough gravy” but that’s okay, she can throw down her herbed biscuits, and they’ll be great.

    I wonder if she calls them herbed and not herb biscuits because otherwise they sound like there’s pot in them. (there’s definitely not)

      • thanks honey! I bet they will. as far as biscuits go, anyway. she is from Texas and cares about biscuits in a way that my PNW heart just doesnt.

  8. I am traveling with other students to Uruguay to have Thanksgiving at my program director and his partner’s house! It will be my queerest and most unique Thanksgiving thus far.

    Normally I would drive with my family to Oklahoma City for lunch with one side of the family, then drive all afternoon to Texas for dinner with the other side of the family. As you might imagine, it’s a bit of a headache but I miss my family so I miss our way of doing the holidays. Distance and my current foreign-ness make the differences within my family seem smaller.

  9. I work at an asshole department store that opens at 6pm on Thanksgiving, so I have to be at work at 5:30. Add to that the fact that I just moved to South Carolina from New York with my girlfriend, I have no family here. My girlfriend is driving to her mom’s house three hours away, and I can’t go with her, because I have to work at 5:30.

    So, I will be spending Thanksgiving with my cat and my puppy, in my house, in a city where I don’t know anyone but my neighbor. Who is going to her abusive misogynist boyfriends family’s house for Thanksgiving.

    I have mixed feeling about it. I hate that stupid retail and insane shopping has forced me to spend a holiday supposedly all about togetherness and being grateful, by myself. But also, I’m super introverted, and am kind of excited about alone time. And since Thanksgiving is really a celebration of asshole white people stealing land from some native people, I’m kind of ok with not celebrating.


    • Ugh, indeed! I hope your alone time proves relaxing, and you can cuddle up with those adorable pets and watch a movie or something. and good luck on friday!!

    • Oh man I think that retail opening so early is inhumane for workers and shoppers! But I’ve also become a champ at spending holidays alone, it feels like the world has given me a time turner because everybody else is using this day for (celebration) and here I am cheating by using it all for myself!

  10. My family is Hispanic so we have recently started celebrating Thanksgiving. This year I’m bringing my girlfriend home for the first time. The problem is that most of family doesn’t know I’m gay. So we have to act as roommates and sleep in different beds and that breaks my heart. But I guess it’s better than giving grandma a heart attack ?
    As for the food, we are having ravioli. Mostly because we are vegetarian, but also because we are Hispanic and turkey is more of a Christmas thing.
    Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

    • Oh man I would so much rather have ravioli, turkey is the worst. Good luck with your girlfriend-not-girlfriend!

    • Just make sure to go on a nice walk or two and make out a bunch when you’re down the street–makes sleeping in different beds a lot more bearable :)

  11. Well, I haven’t come out to anyone in my family yet, not even my parents, because I never really saw the point of breaking anyone’s heart unless I was dating someone and it was serious. I’ve been perpetually single, so it has seemed like a non-issue. Recently though, a lot of my childhood friends have gotten married and my mother has been invited to the weddings with me, so there’s a lot of talk about “when are you getting married” which is leading me to think that maybe I should let her know (especially since I came out to my friends about 5 years ago). I don’t think it’s going to be a giant deal, but my mother has made some pretty hurtful comments lately that I’m getting really messed up over (“that shirt makes you look like a dyke” and worse) so I would like to make it through the holidays and then tell her in January. I don’t want to be responsible for “ruining” the holidays in any way.

    Anyway, we usually have a kids table in my family and I am typically not invited to sit at the adult table. I bitch about it, but the kids table is usually a good time (my 27 year old self with some kindergarteners talking about Star Wars). However, since not all of my cousins are making the drive up this year, we will all fit at the adult table and I imagine that conversation will be painful. My father and I have already started practicing singing Adele (a la that SNL skit).

    I did host a pretty awesome friendsgiving party last weekend, where we ate ridiculous and delicious food (including buffalo chicken lasagna), played the game of things and wrote inappropriate answers, and my friend announced she was pregnant (which is a great cause for celebration). I’m so glad I did something like that because family can be complicated and friensgiving was really a chance to be thankful and celebrate our friendships.

    I do have to work on Friday, but I work for a local business/gift shop so it’s fine. I don’t have to work that many ridiculous hours because we are only open regular hours. I worked at the mall for so many years and every Thanksgiving I had to do things like work overnight or come in on Thanksgiving. My dad just picked up a second job though, and he’s working his first Black Friday this year, so I’m hoping I get a chance to bring some coffee and lunch up to his work.

    Oh, and as for thanksgiving foods….I’m completely in love with STUFFING (we don’t call it dressing!) and anything pumpkin flavored. And after Thanksgiving, I can mourn the loss of pumpkin spice flavored everything for about one minute, and then go on to celebrate the arrival of PEPPERMINT MOCHA FLAVORED EVERYTHING.

    (sorry that’s so long guys. I guess I just have a lot of feelings about thanksgiving).

    • The kids table is where it’s at. Usually it’s closer to the kitchen, and thus the food, as well as the TV. There’s less chance of cringe-inducing politics talk and you can always avoid dangerous waters by diverting to the kids. Usually there’s toys and stuff, (our family always brought out the legos) you could start a card game once everyone’s done eating, and one memorable year they left lit candles at the kids table so we went to town with toothpick shenanigans. Give me the kids table over the adults table any day. Really, it’s more of a parents’ table than an adults table.

    • I feel you on the retail thing–so glad the little boutique I work at is reasonable about black friday!! Wishing your dad good luck and all of you a happy thanksgiving!

  12. This is the first Thanksgiving I am spending alone. I’m not going home to see my family because right now I can’t afford it nor do I really want to go home and see them. It is so complicated. I miss my nieces and my nephew because they are so fun and full of energy.

    Last year I was living and working in a hostel with around 20 co-workers. Those co-workers were like a second family, (or third or fourth, I have a lot of families) The place was full of love and acceptance. I remember being exhausted. I was beginning to nosedive hardcore and was showing the first signs. I was working at the hostel, my second job and trying to work freelance on the side. I just wanted to sleep and not talk to anyone, but I like to fight my introversion. It was a huge Thanksgiving celebration I had so much fun. I ate so much good food because people know how to cook. I played Nintendo Wii and everyone told me, oh Nikki I didn’t know you played video games. Yeah, probably since before you were born.

    I ended the night drinking Pabst in a somewhat dive bar playing Big Buck Hunter HD with my co-worker and my manager and it was simply the best time I had in a very long time. I beat both those boys and haven’t let them live it down to this day.

    I’m okay with being alone on Thanksgiving. It is better than going to Thanksgiving and people asking me if I’ve found anyone yet and what am I waiting for and are you sure you’re really gay? Yeah everyone, just calm the fuck down.

    I’m going to go to the mountains. I’m going to wake up early so I can get a ride-n-dine ticket (someone wish really hard so I actually get up early) and I’m going to go walk around the huge pine trees and frolic through open areas. I’m going to be one with the cold that I normally hate but it is like 35 and I can handle it. I’m going to look cute and just sit and think and be in that moment. That is my Thanksgiving and I am excited to do it.

    • That sounds like such a great Thanksgiving–as much as I enjoy holiday celebrations surrounded by friends some of my favorites have been spent alone. I hope your mountain day is restful and restorative and that sort of thing.

  13. I’m going to have Thanksgiving dinner with my friend’s family on their farm in rural northern Minnesota. I’m very grateful to be included in their celebration because I love spending time with close-knit families. And my friend is super cute and a real smart cookie, so I have so many feelings about tomorrow!

  14. I am 23 and have spent exactly one Thanksgiving with family in the past eight years, so in a stunning turn of events, I am not spending Thanksgiving with my family. I had intended to; I took the week off of work, rented a car, figured everything out, but then I received a beautiful letter from my father telling me that I was selfish, that I needed to repent, that the reason I’m a irreligious homosexual is that I can’t stand not getting what I want, etc etc etc…so lovely. Anyway, instead I’m having a Sweatsgiving with two of my coworkers/neighbors/friends and our dogs. There will be alcohol and food and movies and that’s really all I want in the first place.
    I really hate holidays because they deviate from routine, but Thanksgiving was always a big deal in my family, on my (Native) dad’s side. We’d all descend on my great-grandmother’s house and everyone would be there and there would be SO. MUCH. FOOD. Especially pie. A pie a person, basically. So much pie. With lots of cool whip. I love pie. In college, I spent four Thanksgivings with a family in my church’s college group. A huge multicultural Thanksgiving with Ecuadorians and Salvadorans and Argentinians and Natives and Spaniards and Bahamians and Mongolians casually drinking wolf blood. It was excellent, if not a tad too Christian, but I met two girls who had the same growth pattern as I did toward our current liberal, gay, feminist, ex-Christian, anti-colonialist selves and we were able to help each other along our journey.

  15. My mother flies in tonight to spend Thanksgiving with us. It’s her first time meeting my girlfriend (going on 9 months) and I’ve invited over a couple other grads (including a visiting student from England, it’ll be her first Thanksgiving) and it should be a good time. We got one of those pre-made dinners, easier but they were out of the small ones so we’re gonna have some crazy amount of food left over. (a turkey and a ham for 6 people? two pumpkin pies?)

    Certainly a big step up from last year, Thanksgiving spent sitting in my office in an empty building drinking a slurpee and eating beef jerky.

  16. I have a really tiny family. It’s just my myself, my mom, my dad, and of course two dogs, a cat, and a 15-year-old parrot. I do hope one day when I settle down, my partner has a HUGE family so I can partake in post-dinner football games, play with Legos with the kids at the kiddie table and hide her uncle’s keys after he’s had too many.

    Yesterday while at the grocery store with my mom getting supplies needed for Thanksgiving an arrogant older man (late 60s) started to harass us. It sounds like I’m making this up, but he had on a t-shirt that said, “Liberalism: The Biggest Mental Disorder in the Country.” He literally was THAT guy who complains that Obama is a commie…He looked like a Conservative blow hard in a Mother Jones cartoon.

    I was minding my own business and I put a package of pastries in my shopping cart, a few moments later this guy GRABBED the pastries out of my cart and said, “Oh, I was looking for those.” I made direct eye contact with this jerk and said, “What do you think you’re doing? Do you just think it’s OK to grab things out of someone’s cart?” He laughed and replied, “Oh, well I’m just joking around, why are you getting so offended? Don’t get all mad. You people get offended by every little thing.”

    You. People.

    My mom said something about his shirt, I forget what, because I was still frozen from the “You people” line. He then started to follow my mother and I around the packed grocery store calling us “Liberal hippies” among other things that we couldn’t make out. We ended up having to get an assistant manager and told him that this guy was harassing us. We saw the manager talk to the guy while we were at check out and we left the store.

    What made him think it was OK to violate my personal space (my cart) and why out of the dozen or so people with carts in the bakery section did he choose to grab something out of MY cart? Then I asked myself if I would have reacted differently if he had on a different shirt. Or the reason why he decided to mess with me is because I look like a queer woman. No matter what, people who violate someone’s personal space need to be called out on it.

    • Dude. That’s fucked up. All I could think about was this exact thing happens in my classroom all the time. Because they are 2.

      • I’m just imagining a little kid waving around a donut and yelling “liberal hippies!” over and over

    • what the fuuuuck??

      So glad you were both okay, and so sorry that this happened to you! That dude really does sound like an awful character–ugh!!

    • Sometimes I should keep my mouth shut about things, because people are crazy and who knows what someone is capable of. It’s a sad world where we have to watch what we say to people in fear of getting hurt. But I have been taught to stand my ground, speak my mind and to not turn a blind eye.

      I told my dad about it and he was proud of myself and my mom and he said (In his glorious Boston accent) “That asshole wasn’t expecting to be told where to go! He messed with the wrong women!”

      But yes, he was like an elderly Eric Cartman, “Stupid hippieeeesss!!” Funny thing is, we don’t even look like what someone would describe as a hippie. My mother is more Ann Taylor than Bohemian. She was in the ’70s but that’s neither here nor there. :P

      • 1) your parents sounds delightful!!

        2) I’m the same way–can’t keep my mouth shut for the life of me. Here’s to staying out of trouble and while standing up for ourselves!

    • Scary! But awesome you called him out on it. That’s something I’m working on, and it feels awesome! (If, again, a little scary.)

  17. First time commenting on anything, woo.

    I’m looking forward to a fairly quiet thanksgiving this year. Last year was hell on earth, I was almost 1 year into transitioning, had just started a job while still presenting as a guy (*shudders* eugh that was the worst), nobody in my actual family was calling me by my chosen name… I think we had relatives over, grandma had just died a few weeks earlier… Oh. Right. We went over to my mom’s boyfriend’s family for thanksgiving and ate at noon (I swear to god it was the worst food I’ve ever eaten, I ate just about nothing but the sweet potatoes my mom brought). So yeah, that was also my first time meeting my step dad’s family (or whatever you call the boyfriend your mom is clearly in a long term relationship with but has no intention of ever marrying), and I was kind of in that awkward ‘out but not out, you look quite clearly like you are a girl, but nobody is saying anything, and you haven’t said anything, and nobody wants to say anything except for the one grandmother who has been briefed and is waaaaay overly concerned about the transitioning meds you are on… and your potassium intake, because nobody can remember if sweat potatoes have potassium in them’ stage.

    This year? Nice and quiet. Me, the girlfriend, mom, and her boyfriend. No relatives, no weird step-but-not-step families, no getting misgendered or misnamed save for when mom screws up by accident… which is quite frequent… but best of all, my mom is a completely awesome cook, and I am /so/ looking forward to the food tomorrow. Granted, my corset definitely won’t fit any more, but whatevs.

  18. Every year my best friend and I walk the road race in my hometown. We’ve seen no shortage of great things and costumes. I saw a bunch of frat boys running in Mario themed costumes (complete with the tallest guy as Princess Peach), among other costumes. Last year we walked with a woman who was pushing a stroller and had three different (alcoholic) drinks with her. This year we’re using the race as an excuse to day drink, we’re making a game out of it.

  19. i have purposefully spent thanksgiving alone since i started college because it’s cheaper than flying home for a literal weekend and also i love being alone. but this year, my bisexual music minister invited me to his home with his wife and his five kids. apparently there are gonna be 18 people there. I said yes.

    I just ran out of weed.

    it’s gonna be an adventure.

  20. A lil’ bit sad because I’m in the UK now and have dance rehearsal till 9pm tomorrow and none of my British friends quite get how strange it is that I (along with them because durrr they’re British) will probably not think about Thanksgiving at all tomorrow.

    Someone spoon feed me sweet potatoes and whisper sweet nothings in my ear?

  21. I’m Australian so my family doesn’t really celebrate thanksgiving. However I have celebrated with American and Canadian friends over the years. An awkward memory was at Thanksgiving at my friends’ house when I was five, when I kicked over an expensive Chinese ornament, causing it to break.
    This year we’re not celebrating, but I wish we were because I love thanksgiving. Instead I will probably just marathon tv thanksgiving episodes.
    I came out to my mum though two days ago. So I bought This is a Book for the Parents of Gay Kids a few weeks ago and finally mustered up the courage to give it to her. Problem was though that she was asleep so I had to just leave it on her bed for when she woke up. I heard her wake up but she didn’t seem to have any reaction, then she told me to do something and then walked back into her room and exclaimed, “Who put this here? Juliette, what that you?” Then she asked if I wanted to talk to her, and I said no, just open it and read the letter inside. (Wow this post is getting long). So after some persuasion, I tiptoed down the hallway clutching my pillow and awkwardly began to talk to her. She was very confused about the differences between sexuality and gender identity/ presentation, and began to make a number of assumptions. Overall she took it alright. I finished school for the year yesterday and all I want to do is relax but she keeps bombarding me with questions about my sexuality. Anyway I guess that is my fault because I came out to her. My parents though are fairly clueless when it comes to sexuality, and my mother tried to explain to me why she didn’t have any gay friends. She also called the gay club scene “underground” and seems to view the lgbtq+ community as other, so I will have to work on that. Okay I’m done talking now.

  22. I’m Australian so my family doesn’t really celebrate thanksgiving. However I have celebrated with American and Canadian friends over the years. An awkward memory was at Thanksgiving at my friends’ house when I was five, when I kicked over an expensive Chinese ornament, causing it to break.
    This year we’re not celebrating, but I wish we were because I love thanksgiving. Instead I will probably just marathon tv thanksgiving episodes.
    I came out to my mum though two days ago. So I bought This is a Book for the Parents of Gay Kids a few weeks ago and finally mustered up the courage to give it to her. Problem was though that she was asleep so I had to just leave it on her bed for when she woke up. I heard her wake up but she didn’t seem to have any reaction, then she told me to do something and then walked back into her room and exclaimed, “Who put this here? Juliette, was that you?” Then she asked if I wanted to talk to her, and I said no, just open it and read the letter inside. (Wow this post is getting long). So after some persuasion, I tiptoed down the hallway clutching my pillow and awkwardly began to talk to her. She was very confused about the differences between sexuality and gender identity/ presentation, and began to make a number of assumptions. Overall she took it alright. I finished school for the year yesterday and all I want to do is relax but she keeps bombarding me with questions about my sexuality. Anyway I guess that is my fault because I came out to her. My parents though are fairly clueless when it comes to sexuality, and my mother tried to explain to me why she didn’t have any gay friends. She also called the gay club scene “underground” and seems to view the lgbtq+ community as other, so I will have to work on that. Okay I’m done talking now.

    • Good luck with your continuing coming out process! Sometimes it’s a bit of a slog at first, but hopefully it’ll get better and better! And obviously you’re in the right place if you need some occasional online queermo love and encouragement :) You got this!!

  23. The best part of Thanksgiving is the giant pumpkin pie from Costco!

    My company Christmas party is on Friday and it will be the first time I have gone to a Christmas party in like 6 years so I’m excited and nervous all at the same time but you can’t go wrong with free food and free alcohol.

  24. So I’m going to a Welcome Dinner this weekend. (Australians, if you hate the way our government treats refugees and want to show your support, this is a great way to do it!) I think this is a perfect opportunity to inflict Thanksgiving cuisine on the Australian public. BUT I CAN’T DECIDE WHAT TO MAKE! I definitely don’t want to roast a turkey. I’m terrible at pastry so that rules out pumpkin pie. What does that leave? Stovetop stuffing? Cranberry sauce? ARGH HALP

    • You could always do some homemade cranberry sauce! My mum makes it every year and it’s super easy and tastes AMAZING. You just take, like, a bag of cranberries, some orange juice, and an assload of orange zest, put it all in a pot, and cook that shit until it’s bubbling. It’s this beautiful bright magenta color and it smells like heaven!

      • Yeah, I’m thinking that might be the way to go, especially now that I can actually get frozen cranberries! I’m just hoping there’s something that goes with cranberry sauce, as it’s a bit of an odd thing to eat on its own ^_^

    • Green bean casserole?
      Sweet potato pie? (“pie” is a loose term, it’s just mashed sweet potato/yams with marshmallows on top baked in a glass dish)

        • Yeah vegetables with marshmallows aren’t really my thing either. The welcome dinner sounds like a great idea! Maybe you could do chicken instead of turkey as it’s easier.

  25. Well I don’t remember what my weirdest or most awkward thanksgiving would be, but my most fun was probably last year. I was with a few friends at one of their houses and we just sat there drinking, playing dominoes, and taboo. Can’t go wrong with a few games with group of straight and gay couples(you really learn a lot about peoples sex lives during a game of taboo).

    My favorite kind of pie is chicken pot pie(during my non-vegan days), and apple crisp pie. Oh and that bbq restaurant that Tom Cruise goes to in Top Gun, is an actual restaurant in San Diego called Kansas City Barbeque. They have a really excellent pecan pies. So good in fact, I ordered a second slice, and this was after a eating a nice BBQ turkey meal. Those days are over as I’m trying to lower my weight and cholesterol.

  26. Oh Riese, you have such an amazing way with words.

    “I remember that cold porch, everybody laughing, somebody playing guitar, and a cave in my stomach as big as the happiness I wanted to feel.”

    Fuck. Love it.

    I’ve always been neutral/fine with thanksgiving until my mom told me and my brother (I was 23, he 19) that my parents were getting divorced (WHAT?!), and that she was a lesbian!! Then we had to go act normal at Thanksgiving dinner with the extended family, minus my mom. I had no idea if anyone knew, and it was fucking awful. Worst thanksgiving ever.

    Or maybe the year my mom visited me and had a nervous breakdown, sobbing on my floor telling me she was thinking of maybe going to the hospital because she was afraid of hurting herself? THAT WAS FUN.

    The last couple of years have been mild. My mom and her partner visit, and since she brings her partner with her, she is forced to a hotel!! Halle-fucking-luah!! My life is much less stressfull when I don’t need to be around her 24/7 for 3 days. I’d still rather sit alone, though.

  27. so purple

    Usually we have thanks giving at my/my parents’ house, and it involves my mom trying to do way too much and then having some sort of mental breakdown that morning, and so I end up cooking everything? After the kitchen trauma it tends to be really fun–it’s sort of a free for all, guest-wise, so we always end up having friends or neighbors or whoever along with a small assortment of family members. Everyone eats too much and gets drunk and argues and laughs a lot, and all is well with the worrrld!

    fall birthday party flowers!

    THIS year, we’re going to my aunt and uncle’s house, I’m not cooking much (just helping my mum with some baddass stuffing), and I’m bringing Girlfriend Holly!! It’s the first big family she’s coming too, and the first one that I’ve brought a ladyfriend to; I am so so excited, because the homophobic grandparents aren’t coming and she gets to meet a ton of my fun relatives!!

    Went to the Hammer with my mum and sister, who takes the greatest casual hanging out pictures ever. Gotta love a good pretentious museum photo!

    Me on a rock during mine and holly’s vacation up to pacific grove last month!

    Last night, Holly and I visited her parents and went out on a fun mini date and ate delicious mussels and fancy beer and also I bought a gold lame jumpsuit while we were out? I want to wear it forever and ever and always, but so far haven’t quite figured out where/when to do so in real life.


    In other news, I got pictures back from two things I did a while ago and I’m sort of disappointed in one set because the (usually fantastic and thorough) photographers missed a bunch of really fantastic floral work I did, and I didn’t get extra pictures because I thought they would, and dkfjkjdfbsadfff oh well, can’t help it now. SIGH. But the pictures they DID get were gorgeous, so yay?

    a wedding from the end of the summer! Hard to go wrong with flowers and like a billion mini cupcakes

    The bouquet I did in a workshop at the end of the summer! I took it from two totally amazing floral designers that I really admire, so I was pretty nervous at first, but I totally got into it by the end!

    The bouquet I did for a demonstration I gave recently! It went super well even though I said “shit” a bunch of times in front of my grandma and her garden club friends.

    The roses that I’ve been wanting to steal for the past few weeks, but haven’t because I love seeing them on my walk!

    In other other news I’m currently addicted to drawing on postcards! I finished a big batch and sent them out on monday, so if any of you want a postcard in the mail send me your address! If I didn’t get to you last year, tell me so I can still get one to you this season, even though it’ll be a year late! SORRYYYY


    Good luck not bitching out your relatives on thanksgiving!! LOVE YOU GUYSSS <3 <3 *every flower emoji* <3

  28. Well, I did mean to do the Turkey and full meal extravaganza with friends this year over here in Germany,after I finally got my apartement fully furnished, but #fail.
    No new couch, no carpet and no Turkey.
    I really need to get my act together and Thanksgiving is a wonderful reminder of that;-)
    Have a good time, people!

  29. A couple friends from school let me tag along last week to a thing that they do, which is watch kung fu movies and eat food, so I’ve had my good thanksgiving this year, thank god.
    The only reason I really drove back to my parents is to play with cats and see my best friend.

  30. Today I’m really having to confront the fact that the most recent Netflix ‘upgrade’ was a major downgrade in that:

    1) you now have to click through for a synopsis/reviews.
    2) the search function will not show results by actor, only by movie title.

    On the plus side, no one gets to veto what I eventually find to watch, and I don’t have to share the popcorn either. Calling it a victory.

  31. My weird family has Christmas on Thanksgiving (we call it Thanksmas) so that people (like my grandma) can travel to far-off places during Christmas and not worry about missing out. This will be the second year doing it at my uncle’s house because it’s bigger and easier to host in than my grandma’s. My grandma is still bitter about it.

    This is also the first year I’m bringing a girl, and in order to do that I had to come out to my grandma a little over a week ago. “Well I don’t like it. But ok.” This is exactly the same speech she regularly gives my sister for living in sin. (Because it’s not enough to be with someone for 5 years before you move in together, apparently there has to be a ring on it.)

    I’ve come out to my mom, sister, and favorite aunt and uncle in turn over the past 5 or so years, but I don’t feel like anyone else matters. One of my cousins asked my mom when I was going to come out, and my mom said, “When are you going to come out as straight?” Said cousin is 33, married, and has a kid.

    I’m not sure whether there will be shock and drama, or whether everyone has already gossiped enough that no one will be surprised. I suspect the latter.

    Uncle has already promised girlfriend (the most extreme introvert I’ve ever met) that if it becomes too much she can play in the backyard with the puppy (they were best friends at first sight).

    Thank goodness it’s only a 45 minute drive and at some point we can be like, “oh, gee, we have to get back and feed her dog…”

    But ohmygosh I’m gonna eat so much pumpkin pie.

  32. This is my second Thanksgiving away from home (grad school) and the first year when my dad’s side of the family won’t all get together where I grew up (because my grandmother passed in July). My cousin and his wife just had their second child, so his parents are joining them in Richmond, VA. My sister and my other cousin are staying in DC, and my parents will be the only ones in upstate NY. They’ll eat Thanksgiving with just the two of them for the first time since they got married 31 years ago.

    I’ll travel all the way from Brooklyn to Queens to have dinner with a friend from school and some of his friends from DC and elsewhere. I think everyone there will be queer and under 35, and we’re going to have an absurd amount of booze. Should be an interesting time.

  33. Four or five years ago I was living on a really run down, negative income farm with a bunch of other queers. We pooled all our money for cheap booze, processed an ancient turkey that had been terrorizing the chickens and made a bunch of other food that I don’t remember because we started drinking as soon as we got up for morning chores. I think there were tater tots? And I have a fuzzy memory of possibly making a pie. Then we left all the food out on the table in a very unsanitary common space/storage shed and picked at it for days afterwards. I think probably the only reason none of us got food poisoning is because it was freezing or below those days and the space was unheated. Also because we had enough alcohol in our systems to kill anything (pretty sure that is how that works, yes?). It didn’t feel weird at the time but in retrospect it was slightly irregular.

    This year my life is worlds different and I am extremely happy about that and tomorrow I will be with friends. The only thing I am responsible for is mulled wine. The store was out of some of the spices I wanted, and also I forgot to get brandy, but oh well! It will be warm wine with spices and honey and fruit floating in it and it will be delicious.

  34. For the first time in my 41 years, this is the first Thanksgiving I’m spending without humans. It’ll just be my dogs and I all weekend and I’m really looking forward to it. I just finished two years worth of home remodels and I’m relishing the idea of being in my own space, doing exactly what I want, when I want. There will be sage butternut lasagna for dinner, an apple pie for dessert, a bit of wine, and lots of reading, sleeping, Netflix binging (Jessica Jones…), gaming, reflecting, and dog snuggles in between.

  35. i have a lot i am dying to complain about but i am trying to be really posi this thanksgiving with my family so i am not. i will just note that on the VERY FIRST DAY I WAS HERE my dad said that he thought the second x-files movie was better than the first, and i think that’s really indicative of a lot of things.

  36. As soon as I was old enough–according to my parents, which was earlier than 21–my job at Thanksgiving was to drink wine and listen to Grandma complain that no one loved her. Otherwise she would often run away, sometimes for days, angry that no one listened to her or cared what she thought. I became a pretty good listener through the years.She developed Alzheimer’s about 6 years ago and passed away about 2 years ago. One of my last memories of her being really aware of everything well was when I came out to her.

    It was around this time of year and I was at home for a few months in between my jobs in Korea and Hong Kong. Her Alzheimer’s developed slowly and she would “put things away” around the house but couldn’t find them later. Or stuff would turn up in odd places. One afternoon she came downstairs cracking up and carrying a bottle of Wild Turkey that someone ended up on her dresser. The rest of the afternoon she’d switch between telling me how funny it was that she must have “put it away” there and a story about how the damn neighbor kids must be to blame.

    That night Grandma, Grandpa and I made the best of it in the highest of Maryland class. We drank Wild Turkey mixed with boxed wine and told stories around the kitchen table. At some point, I told them I was gay and had a serious girlfriend back in Asia. They told me they loved me and we kept sharing and telling more stories. They learned a bit about my girlfriend and asked concerned “grandparenting” questions like, “Is she nice?” and, “What does she do?”

    She would meet another one of my girlfriends a few years later but I’m not sure she really knew who she was. Grandma liked her though because she listened and was short, whereas the rest of us towered over her. Grandma remembered the Wild Turkey night for a few years longer though, and Grandpa told me how she would bring it up and say how much fun she had. Every time we talked about me visiting, they would bring it up and I would promise we would drink our drink together. We did a few more times, to many giggles.

    Around this time of year, I’m thankful that I got to have that night and toast to Grandma with a mix of cheap wine and bourbon. I’ve come out to a lot of people over the years and have been lucky to have generally positive experiences. But nothing compares to happiness I got, and got to share with Grandma, on Wild Turkey night.

    • Thank you so much for sharing this. As I mentioned above, my grandmother passed away in July and now I’m really feeling it this morning. My grandmother and I had birthdays four days apart and had a big dinner once at a place called the Daisy Flour Mill that we talked about for years. There’s wasn’t any Wild Turkey involved, but still an enjoyable time.

      It’s funny that your parents gave you the “job” of listening to your grandmother. It was always my “job” to visit my grandmother was home, as she would be happier (and nicer to other people) after seeing me. She did a lot to get me to where I am now (living in Brooklyn and in grad school at NYU) and I have to remember that and give thanks today. So thanks for reminding me.

  37. My beautiful gf and I will be making all the best parts of Thanksgiving food (read: carbs and pie) and wondering whether it would be better to have a friendsgiving next year or if we really like just being together with no one judging the amount of pie we consume.

  38. all my moms family gets together at my grandparents every year, and I love it. thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. we do a big lunch, usually with mimosas beforehand, and we’ll have like five different desserts. everyone will chill out and watch football and talk and possibly nap all afternoon, and then we eat leftovers and have a card tournament that night. it’s really nice. my family is really religious and conservative and I’m not out to most of them, so that puts a little damper on it, but it’s usually not a big deal. plus thanksgiving is pretty irreligious (vs like Christmas or Easter) which is part of why I like it. no built in awkwardness.

  39. This is my first year not having Thanksgiving with my family. The last few years its been hard because my college is on the quarter system, and our last week of class is the week after thanksgiving. Meaning so many large assignments/projects are always due right after, making going home stressful (besides the stress of just being home). But this year my older brother has moved back in with my parents and he is an abusive ass so there was no way I was even considering going home. I’m having friendsgiving with my little squad of writing friends. I’m really excited. I’m going to make my best tomato soup in the world, blueberry cobbler and green beans. I’m very excited for what everyone else is bringing! It’s going to be great! Too bad I kinda have to go home for christmas, itd be fun to do it again for that, I think most of my friends are going home for that though.

  40. SEATTLE PEOPLE! This just in! Meowtropolitan cat café to open by Christmas 2015.

    Thanksgiving has never really been much of an event in my family. I’ve actually never spent it with more than three people: my parents and my brother. Wait, no. I spent it with more than three people when I was in treatment at a partial hospitalization program. That doesn’t count.

    Anyway, this year is pretty uneventful, as usual. I live approximately an hour and a half away from my parents, but I don’t think I’ll visit. It isn’t that there’s tension between us (actually, we’re pretty close) – it’s just that the holiday isn’t anything special in our family. And my mom is working a lot that week. Be nice to retail workers like her on black Friday! I will be avoiding anything shopping related on black Friday at all costs because big crowds turn me into a misanthropist.

    Other than that, I’ve been busy applying for grad school and contacting different faculty members. I’m oscillating between anxious “what-ifs” and genuine optimism and excitement.

    I’m not really planning anything in particular for Thanksgiving dinner. But in the afternoon I’ll be hanging out with my younger brother since he’s on break from college, so that will be nice.

    Last week I drove over Snoqualmie Pass to pick him up from campus, and just being on a college campus reminded me that I missed academia. On a different note, I was very happy that I missed our snowstorm over the pass. I have never put on chains (even though I have a spare set in my car upon my parents’ insistence), and my car doesn’t do snow. Here are some pretty mountain photos:

    No, that isn’t a fire. It’s a sunset.

    I want to live here.

    • I grew up in the Pac NW (Pdx) and our family would rent a cabin on the coast in the winter because it was more affordable than summer rates. The drive from the Willamette valley over the coastal range is beautiful esp in the winter. Your pics are great and remind me of those trips to the coast.

  41. Two things to share, at least right now anyway.

    Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe

    1 cup smooth peanutbutter
    1 cup sugar
    1 egg

    325-350 degrees
    8-12 minutes in the oven
    Give them a couple minute to cool before trying to take them off the cookie or they will go crumble-squish.

    Topping considerations- a single mini M&M or some sort of chocolate bit
    To make Peanut Butter and Jelly cookies use your littlest finger to make shallow indents and use the tiniest spoon you can find, or the tip or a dull knife, to place jelly in said indent.

    Most Awkward Thanksgiving Memory Ever

    This one takes some context. My PawPaw was a man who liked making jokes and of course being raised Cajun loved food. Some people eat to live, but down here we live to eat.
    Growing up Thanksgiving was always at his place and many other holidays to, you could call him the head of the family I guess.

    Not long after his 79th birthday he was treated for a cancer of the throat (basically). One of the parts of his treatment applied radiation directly to his throat and it caused the flap of his esophagus to fuse shut. Meaning for the rest of his live he would never eat food ever again and all his nourishment would come from the damn abdominal feeding tube.

    A Thanksgiving not long after this I wore some stupid pants not fit for feasting on turkey ect.
    he didn’t come to the meal, but everyone went to visit him afterward. He asked me how I was and I made a joke about my stupid fucking pants and how I should have worn different pants for how good all the food was and how much of it I ate.
    It was the sort joke he would have and in his delivery style too.


    • Aw, your PawPaw. :/

      Is that really all I need for peanut butter cookies? I can totally make those!

      • Yeah his last years sucked. Cancer, then no more eating, under all that Alzheimer’s was “hiding” and because of the abdominal feeding tube he had to put in a home that was much harsher than his mental condition was. He didn’t go combative and mean like some do.

        Yes, Laura that is all you really need to make those peanut butter cookies.
        And I’ve trying to figure when or when a good time to say it; thank you for those Filipino recipes you posted. They gave me chance to connect with my Grampy in a way we never never got in life.
        Specifically the puto rice cakes. They make a great All Saints Day offering and another treat in my gluten free baking repertoire…
        So yeah, thank you.

  42. I remember the thanksgiving where we were at some family friend’s house, whose kids I didn’t know very well. The evening culminated in the three of them forming a club that specifically presided on not including anyone else, including me (The name of the club? “NOT” based on the combined initials of their first names). Yet they decided they wanted to go TPing houses (on thanksgiving? it’s unexpected!) and drag me along with them.

    That definitely has to be the weirdest thanksgiving memory I have.

  43. I used to get sick on Thanksgiving, or Christmas…as a child of divorced parents the stress over having to shuffle around and do whatever was court mandated definitely did not agree with me. As a result I never really developed my own holiday traditions since I was either doing mom stuff or dad stuff in a given year.

    Fast forward to modern times. My wife and I are hosting my mom and her relatives in our house. There are people everywhere, literally sleeping in every room but the kitchen. I’ve never made a turkey before. I don’t know what we’re doing. Just faking it.

  44. Well, the good news for Thanksgiving is that I hang out with my extended family. The other good news is that this year I decided to get myself a RAD buzzed haircut (kind of like Frankmusik’s hair). The bad news is that my parents are finally noticing that I prefer masculine of center clothing, and my mom keeps quizzing me on whether I’m “a transgender” or whether I’m going to “change my sex”, and it’s driving me crazy. All will be kittens when I eat pie and get home, that’s what I keep reminding myself :) Thanks Riese for making this thread!

  45. I often have mixed feelings about Thanksgiving because my family is small and doesn’t make a big deal about getting together for holidays, and the past couple of Thanksgivings I’ve been on my own while friends and/or partners were at family gatherings.

    This year I’m in Namibia doing oral history research for my PhD. I love the work, but this morning I caught myself thinking the same “why can’t I ever spend Thanksgiving surrounded by people I love?” thought. To be fair, though, Thanksgiving week has found me surrounded by people I love. I was a volunteer teacher in this region before I started grad school, and last Sunday I joined in a Thanksgiving potluck hosted by the current volunteers in this region. We each invited a Namibian guest–mine was a teacher from the school where I used to volunteer! And earlier this week, I visited the village where I used to live for the first time in five years. It felt surprisingly like home still. And do you know that call and response song “Boom Chicka Boom”? Well, when I was teaching Arts as a volunteer, I taught my learners that song. And when I showed up at the school on Tuesday to reunite with old friends, some of the learners started singing that song. It’s not a huge thing, but it meant a lot to me. So even though I’m not with blood relations this Thanksgiving, I’ve had some pretty great company the past few days.

    • Family Holidays abroad are tough! Getting together with friends and trying to make some nostalgia food really helps. I found also that it helps to celebrate the local holidays that are more of the “family” holidays with people in the country. I’ve lived in Korea and Hong Kong, and Lunar New Year is the big family holiday here. I’ve spent a few at friends’ houses with their relatives. You get the usual family 3rd degree questions because you’re new, though usually the questions are awkwardly translated by your friend. And you get to see grandparents and aunts and uncles doting on little kids dressed in their holiday best. Even though it’s not a holiday that you’re attached to culturally, it’s got that same feeling that you remember.

  46. My family decided we are going to do a new tradition of a Turkey Trot… which was ok minus the part where I had to be awake and conscious without coffee at 7am… And we live in New England and its COLD…

    • WITHOUT COFFEE?!?!? I can not even. Like, coffee would be definitely needed on that occasion. NEEDED. I hope you enjoyed the run anyway!

  47. So far only two cousins and an aunt are blatantly ignoring us so, not too bad. That’s only like 15%.

    • Hey, that’s probably a higher general acceptance rating than you would get with the public as a whole. So I’d mark this one as a win.

  48. This is not the first Thanksgiving I’ve spent away from family, but it is the first I’ve spent alone, and it feels weird as heck. And by alone, I mean with about 7 dogs (see attached collage of some of my favorite furry customers). I’ve been dog sitting to make up for being technically unemployed and this is by far the #1 holiday for dog sitters to make bank, so it’s not all bad (aside from having to wake up at 6am). Last year was the first time I spent the holiday away; I came out about two months before and had my first serious girlfriend, and my family was mostly shunning me at the time…but I got to join the gf’s extended family and it was the closest thing to a hallmark holiday I’d ever experienced. My family has never done anything super special for thanksgiving, but I’ve always dreamed about having a big extended family or a huge group of friends to cook for and share traditions with. Still dreaming ): Luckily things are mostly better with my family this year and I’ll see them for Christmas, and finally get back to my mother’s cooking. I could just about die for some of her gingerbread.

  49. Honestly grateful for this open thread and cheery holiday Straddler stuff online. For us introverts it’s a fine line between blissful solitude and feeling a bit lonely doing a solo Thanksgiving, and the online Autostraddle community is helping me stay firmly on the blissful solitude side.

    RN I’m at work (voluntarily; it’s wonderful because I love my lab job and I get all the science equipment to myself today).

    Later I will enter the ‘over-estimated cooking abilities with ambitious menu’ phase. Which doesn’t take much; I’m not much of a cook. But hopefully later I will be enjoying my mashed garlic yams with mushroom gravy, homemade cranberry sauce and/or cranberry bread, roasted Brussels sprouts and the traditional fresh mango for dessert heh. My first vegan Thanksgiving. I will share with my room mate hopefully, if he’s around.

    So, thanks for being here Straddlers! Happy Thanksgiving!–0hHWU

  50. Did you know that fresh cranberries audibly pop when you cook them because I did not. Did everyone know this but me? I thought I knew my way around the produce section but this was a well-kept secret.

    • No I didn’t know this. I’ve only ever made cranberry relish by blending them raw with sugar and an orange in a food processor. I also like eating the berries whole and plain. I know, I am a weirdo.

      • Welp the hardest part is maybe finding fresh cranberries to buy, because the recipe is as easy as boiling sugar water for 10 minutes; that’s literally it. I hope if you do try it you enjoy the popping sound! Festive. :^D

        • True and I don’t live in place that has much love cranberries.
          Putting on bucket list thing anyway.

          Hope I can do on New Years or maybe even the 4th of July, would be super festive.

  51. Lost my phone and therefore my contacts so I have no one text this to and secretely cackle with:
    My sibling is dressed like a dapper butch but with a hipster beard and an Edwardian handlebar mustache. He looks so ridiculous and I was worried I’d be the gawked at one with my andro femme dress and tac boots. xD

    Orange bow tie and suspenders are so much more eye catching omg.
    I can’t stare at him for more than a few seconds without feeling like I’m going to crack up laughing.

    • Orange bow-tie? That sounds like something that Bill Nye would pull off. Which is a good thing. I’m trying to envision the combo with suspenders and hipster facial hair.

      • But Bill Nye is a brunette and a nice person. My sibling is an Aryan poster boy in the looks department and not a nice person.

        I refuse to call him my brother and he likely does not wish to call me sister. He’d love to call me dead because I’m a useless waste of space in his worldview, but holy shit orange is so not his colour.

        I fail at a lot things but at least I can dress myself and know what colours do and do not work together.
        Also I am not shit to people because we’re all for the worms. Not saying I’m a nice person, but I’m at least not shitty person who thinks only others like me are worthy of decency.

  52. Apparently two women stormed the field during the Lions/Eagles game. They were carrying a banner calling for an end to animal cruelty.

  53. I already commented earlier, but I thought I’d come back to add this delightful sentence my mother said to me today:

    “Why can’t you find a friend’s with benefits? I’m not asking for a son-in-law; I’m asking for a grand baby.”

    Happy Thanksgiving! Hope your days are less awkward than mine!

    • Aw man the only come back to the that is kinda icky, but rather Turkey-Day appropriate if you get my meaning. :P

      I mean you could always tell her adoption, it’s just assisted reproduction really tends to gross people out and get them to shut the fuck up in a way something beautiful like adoption never can.

      And who’s to say you even want kids…the presumption one’s grown as children will spawn just you want them to has always irked me.

        • Ahh well turkey baster humour is probably not how you’d like to come out huh…
          Awkward silence probably better, still it’s your repro bits not hers.

  54. So I’m here at my parents’ house, very full and stomach achey and also somewhat tipsy. My girlfriend (!!!!) is currently dozing in my bed in a food coma, and my parents, cousins, and brothers are shouting at the teevee downstairs. I guess they’re still watching football down there?? Who knows. Having her here has definitely made dealing with my crazy family significantly easier! They were all very nice to her too, which was good. They were even nicer to me; I was only made fun of for being a vegetarian twice tonight!

  55. My grandma is 87 and still hosts Thanksgiving (bless her). We order Thanksgiving dinner from her favorite Jewish deli but I also brought homemade green bean casserole and cranberry stuffed crescent rolls. Easiest sides ever!

    My family is so awkward and small. And its especially weird because my mom doesn’t do holidays with my dad anymore (they’re emotionally separated, even though that’s not really a thing).

    I have a lot to be thankful for, but being the stable happy put together young adult that everyone is thankful for is exhausting. I’m excited I get to see my partner this weekend so I can fall apart and let myself be exhausted by the holiday season.

  56. The most awkward Thanksgiving I ever had was the time a friend at college invited me and another person to his family’s for the holiday and it turned out that they had been secretly hooking up all semester and then I had a serious panic attack during dinner and had to leave the table.

    Or the time that I went home from college with my friend and her Russian family had made all this food I’d never seen before and they spent the whole evening talking in Russian with each other, with my friend alternately translating for me and chastising them for being rude and leaving me out of the conversation.

    This year the dog tried to eat a bee three hours before we were supposed to go to dinner at a friend’s house and we had to rush him to the emergency vet with his face all ballooned up :( I’ve never felt so much like a parent before.

  57. This year thanksgiving is about as enjoyable as the rest of my life this, which is to say not so much. I half opted out/half wasn’t included in any celebratory plans which left me 8 hours of work in the am followed by the rest of the many hours left to read ALL of the comments on this thread. No joke, fell asleep with this thread open in my hand. So i would like to say thank you to all of you who invited me and the rest of our queer and possibly alone-on-the-holidays family here into your awkward, loving, rude, cynical, welcoming, warm, sports loving, turkey throwing, meltdown prone, and incredible families, friendsgivings, petsgiving, boozegiving,antigiving, alonesgiving and anything else i missed. You’re all beautiful.

  58. Well, this was my first Thanksgiving home after three years of living abroad. I was excited to be home but quickly reminded as to why I enjoy having significant distance from my family. I got to enjoy being belittled by my older sister which ended in a blowout fight over Black Lives Matter. Good thing I only see her twice a year.

      • Well, the best way I can summarize her position is that she is team “war on cops.” She thinks all the “poor individual police officers” are being “crucified” by “liberal viral media” and that there are not enough details and therefore she can’t draw any wider conclusions and therefore black lives matter is irrelevant and invented by gullible “liberals.” Did I mention she has a PhD? I can’t with her. I can’t.

  59. I actually had a pretty good Thanksgiving this year, after a few shitty years eating alone with my kids and Boston Market. While we didn’t cook all day, say “Grace” and eat around a table with my extended family, hanging out with my mom, dad, and brothers felt peaceful.

    Today, I actually felt kinda sad that I wasn’t out Black Friday shopping. Isn’t that strange? Insatiable urge to fight for a TV, much? Chicago motivated me to stay in the house and not donate a dime to capitalism, but I caught myself watching HSN for most of the day. That dern flexpay, how I love thee.

  60. Thanksgiving FOT! To all of you who were stressed by your families, I hope every single one of you found time for self care, too.

    Ugh. So, you know “if you build it, they will come?” Well, a cousin and I cleaned out my garage earlier this week to create a ping pong/kegerator/Cards Against Humanity room, which has been amazing for all of the youngish family visiting from out of town, BUT also my stepbrother, who’s only 24 and still really kind of just a kid, came over tonight with everyone and drank a LOT and tried to drive home slurring and falling over and my cousins had to talk him down to get his keys and drive him and now I’m worried about him and can’t sleep and can’t stop stressing out. Maybe that’s totally normal twenty something boy behavior, I don’t know. But I really wish I didn’t know because if he was like that tonight he’s probably worse with his friends? And do I mention it to my parents? Not sure about any of it. Being the adult is so lame sometimes! Anyway the rest of thanksgiving has been lovely, and hopefully I’m just being my normal worrywart self for nothing. :)

    Wow, what a long-winded post about nothing fun! ? to you all and happy thanksgiving, I’m thankful for AS along with the rest of my family and friends!

    • ADULTHOOD. I feel like that’s not TOO unusual, but I’d keep an eye on him next time you hang out in a drinking context? See what’s up. Good luck!! <3

  61. I had planned on coming out to my family this T-day, but I wussed out. My family, all 7 of them, aren’t that intolerant, but most are republican, and one once said that Mike Brown “needed to be shot”. (he also blames a lot of things on The Gays…) So there’s that. Anyway, I have really bad anxiety disorder, and just looking around the table and imagining all the worst case scenarios…guh. I hate the closet, but I wonder if I’ll ever get the guts to leave it.

  62. Went to my partner’s family’s thanksgiving. Multiple people cried, ovens of multiple apartments were used, multiple children who were too old to be nightmares were fucking nightmares, and there were no sweet potatoes.


    REPEAT: NO PUMPKIN PIE. They cooked for DAYS and there was NO PUMPKIN PIE.

    Next year We Are Not Going in A Stand of Pumpkin Pie Solidarity.

  63. Ok I just finished the last of the leftovers; Thanksgiving is officially over heh.

    This was my 1st solo Thanksgiving and first one as vegan. My room mate was decidedly uninterested in sharing any of the food ahah; he is a committed omnivore from Mexico so there was no appeal for him to eat weird food on a random Thursday; nbd, moar for me.

    The recipes that turned out the best were by far the easiest: the cranberry sauce was SO GOOD and SO EASY plus the delightful popping sounds of the cooking berries was a fun surprise. I added the juice and zest of one orange, and used brown sugar instead of white and it tasted and smelled really good. I ended up eating it with slices of mango; they complemented each other well.

    The other super-simple dish was curry mashed yams with garlic mushroom gravy. I sauteed mushrooms, onions and garlic, cooked the yams in the microwave, blended them with a stick blender with soy milk, added curry powder. Instant mushroom gravy mix added to the sautee, garnish with green onions.

    The balsamic roasted Brussels sprouts were ok for my first try; the spice bread only tastes good with a ton of pb on it. :^D

    Hope everyone got to sleep in and have good food and some quality time over the break. <3

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