To quote civilization’s immortal Nostradamus: “Man, this Thanksgiving is a real turkey!”
It was 1621. The New World. Pilgrims. Near the shining big sea water, a chief passed around buffalo hors d’oeuvres, a peace pipe, and both sides of the woods came together. We’re talking venison, ducks and geese. It was cabbage, onions, pumpkin, squash and porridge. The Wampanoags ate well.
In 1789, President Washington, flashing his dentured smile, gave his OK after a request by Congress. In 1798, John Adams declares this official. In 1814, President James Madison renews the tradition, gives it the Good Housekeeping Seal, and right away came stuffing and the Cooking Channel’s store-bought gravy.
In 1863, Lincoln, tired of reading biographies about himself, establishes Thanksgiving an annual tradition. 1941. FDR makes this a national holiday. Mazel tov, said his patrician socialite mother.
And how do I know all this? Because I was there.
Looking back . . .
Memories of earlier Thanksgivings: Salma Hayek was “once in Kosovo, Macedonia and Bosnia. I was doing the USO’s ‘Operation Starlift’” … Brooke Shields: “In an igloo in Canada’s frozen north. Inuit custom is to offer food, clothing and your woman. So I slept with a metal rod by my side” … Ben Stiller: “Andy Kaufman came to our house when I was very young. Instead of the roast, he asked my mother for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and some chocolate.”
Also. If stuck for a holiday gift, an English dollhouse is grabbable at Christie’s. Five feet high, six rooms, even a central staircase. Per the catalog: “Superb example of a doll’s house — larger than average. Previously owned by kin of the Duke of Devonshire at Chatsworth House in Derbyshire.” Understand, we are not speaking some Salvation Army leftover. Estimate: $1,332 to $2,664.Tally-ho.
The show goes on
Meanwhile, holidays — and romance — go on. Radial Park at Halletts Point Play in Astoria. A new waterfront drive-in. The audience in cars. The stars — “Selena’s” Eva Noblezada — live on the red carpet. Plus, her boyfriend, Reeve Carney, live. They met when both were in “Hadestown.” Not live on the red carpet was her husband, Leo Roberts. They’re separated.
Let’s look to the future
To chew on besides the drumstick: In his farewell, written by B’way’s Alexander Hamilton, G. Washington warned a “spirit of revenge in different ages and countries” has led to “formal despotism.” President Trump never directed anyone to prosecute or get revenge on a political enemy. So forget Biden telling Donald to stand in the corner. Meanwhile, other open mouths are pronouncing the name Nikki Haley for president. Our former UN Ambassador, she’s articulate, ambitious and Dem dwarves are already writing her name on foggy windshields.
What a year
Now it’s now. As one lady from India said: “Hold up your hand. All five fingers are different.” That’s America in 2020. Factions, sides, congressional aisles, PETA, militant haters, Nazi sympathizers, bartenders turned socialists, racists, killers, marchers. It’s iPads, Xboxes, demonstrators, flag burners, statue destroyers. It’s men’s crotches grazing the ground and ladies’ boobs outside the dress.
When a big-time actress did not get her anticipated Oscar, Hollywood super agent Kevin Huvane sent yellow roses with this exact note: “Don’t let the f–kers get you down.”
My Thanksgiving gift to all of you for reading this far: Love, and see you again after the holiday.