To me, Thanksgiving has always been a sumptuous feast. We always have the traditional turkey (as opposed to the, which I refuse to eat on moral grounds) and an ample selection of sides to go along with it. We are not chefs, but my wife and I can cobble together a decent feast from Food Network recipes and the Betty Crocker cookbook. We like variety, albeit of a traditional sort.
My daughter doesn’t care about variety. She likes cranberries. Recently we went online to find some cranberry recipes.
“Perhaps you’d like to try Cranberry, Apple and Fresh Ginger Chutney?” we offered. “Or maybe a Cranberry-Pomegranate Terrine?”
“That’s OK,” she responded. “I just want cranberries.”
Of course, cranberries to her aren’t a thought-out accompaniment to our Thanksgiving dinner; to her, cranberries are the dinner. And they aren’t cranberries if they don’t come from a can, which means they aren’t cranberries at all. What she considers to be cranberry sauce is actually a disturbingly gelatinous blob that looks like a liquid, but somehow manages to maintain the shape of its container for weeks at a time. It isn’t prepared so much as birthed, emerging into this world with an indescribable sound that can best be expressed phonetically as “shplorp.”
This Thanksgiving, as I do every Thanksgiving, I will sit at the table and admire a sumptuous feast, and think to myself how I have no appetite to enjoy it—thanks to the small, canister-shaped purple globule sitting just to the left of the stuffing.