guns and gobblers
There's something synonomous about Thanksgiving and Connecticut and, as it appears, for evidential reason.
This year, Thanksgiving fish, white rice, seaweed salad, tofu cubes and kimchee was replaced with a sixteen pound gobbler, russet mashers, cranberry pineapple marmalade, squashed squash and greens. And rather than a table for five with muted sounds of a football game in the background, it was a rounding of eight with sounds coming from the table. I was invited by the suitor to a traditional Thanksgiving feast with his 'rents and bros in Connecticut...and I live to tell about it.
Meeting the family is like going to see the movie of the book you've been reading. The pictures in your head are realized true or "the book was better." Reactions range from, "the mom DOES bake one hell of a pie" to "he's not THAT much taller than his twin." But unlike a book-based-movie, it's not about comparisons, it's about witness.
To bear witness to the relationships between the one you've been getting to know and the ones who know him best exposes you to a part of someone's world that cannot be learned through words, mostly because they've been forgotten or censored. But someone in the family always remembers your actual most embarrassing tale and censorship isn't exercised when it comes to love, fights and spit bombs. Intimates and idiosyncrasies naturally display in the private viewing of a home. Childhood nicknames, slip-ups of the former gf, dad's muscle flex gun-show jokes and yelps from a pillow fight with his eight year old niece are shared. Sculpted pieces from his nine year old hands, where the bunk beds once stacked and the lawn where the tent pitched during summer nights are shown. Photos of old girlfriends, big hair and rented formal attire are opportunely seen. Driving past the baseball field where practice was held, the church that named him an altar boy, and the movie theater that gave him his first job and first beer are toured. These are the inners of someone's life that have to be seen, they cannot be read. Thanks for a ticket to the show, the gun show that is.