Washington and Thanksgiving

The Super Committee in charge of finding solutions to the debt issue  hasn’t reached and probably won’t ever reach an agreement.  This group of people who pretended to be able to work together but didn’t make any real effort to succeed reminds me of the dynamics of a family.
And what celebration but Thanksgiving rhymes better with family?
With its corn-bread sausage dressing and roasted turkey, its French green beans and mashed potato puree, its pumpkin pie and cranberry jelly, Thanksgiving is the only day in the year where everybody in the United States eats about the same food and sits with relatives around a table.
For a nation that eats whenever it’s convenient or pleasing, on the go more than around a table, and on most days alone, it is an exploit.
Thanksgiving is an American strange celebration if you think of it.   The occasion for all members of a family to gather and share the annual American meal is of course already an occasion to celebrate.  Yet inviting relatives for such a feast implies going through the list of family members, including the awkward, embarrassing, and estranged ones.
And from what I hear from my American friends, it can be a challenge with re-marriages and the children that come with them, with the odd uncle or great-aunt that nobody can’t ignore but doesn’t really want to entertain either and of course with growing kids who have boyfriends and girlfriends, partners, husbands and wifes.
Who goes where? Do you flip-flop every year? I’ve heard of two Thanksgiving dinners.
Even for a French woman who likes to cook and eat it looks like an extraordinary amount of food for one day.  By the way, read The Table Comes First: France, Family, and the Meaning of Food, the latest Adam Gopnik’s book if you want to know more about the special French relationship with food.
So, as I am preparing my Thanksgiving to-do-list (yes it will include a pumpkin pie and mashed potato puree), I am thankful to be an immigrant who has no intricate and elaborate family ties in this land that I love.
One thing is sure: on Thursday, at my home, every family member will reach an agreement since every dish we will enjoy is someone’s favorite. 
The Super Committee should meet on Thanksgiving and share a similar meal.
Who knows?  They might find that it is easier to agree when food is prepared with everyone’s taste in mind.

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