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Sound Advice

Pie Is Not a Gel (and Other Thanksgiving Tips)

Pie Is Not a Gel (and Other Thanksgiving Tips)
Credit: Allison Marchant

I know it’s fun to rag on Thanksgiving, but I like it, crazy relatives and all—mostly because mine involves copious amounts of white wine and Patsy Cline (which would improve any day of the year, if one could get away with it). My sister and I have Thanksgiving down pat: It’s a busy day in the kitchen, but we’ve never really sweated it like our mom and grandmother.

As a result, sometimes stuff gets cold, or burnt. We usually eat at least an hour later than planned. We make conversational beelines toward politics and religion. At least one person gets drunk and picks a fight. By dessert, someone is usually in tears. The day is mostly a success not because we’re awesome cooks or hostesses, but because we managed the expectations of everyone else long ago during family therapy. 

But not everyone’s family dynamics have benefited from psychiatric intervention—and really, who needs it when you have the internet? If you are looking for (amateur) help surviving Thanksgiving this year, I’ve got your back:

Flying? You won’t have much exasperation to spare, so do your sanity a favor and review the latest TSA rules:

Making dinner? Fear not. I do it almost every year, and you can, too.

It can be helpful to line up extraculinary activities that do not require actually speaking to your family.

Or speaking to anyone, period.

And if that doesn’t work, there’s always alcohol.

Now that you’ve done your homework, relax and enjoy the day. Happy Thanksgiving!

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TMN Editor Liz Entman Harper has lived in St. Louis, New York, and Nashville. She sweats the small stuff, like hyphens and commas, and has a day job, but won’t bore you with the details. More by Liz Entman Harper

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