Thanksgiving Tune

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Today is Thanksgiving, and if there’s a song in the air, I’m pretty sure that  it is a Christmas song and not a Thanksgiving tune.  Turn on the radio and you can find stations airing Christmas songs 24/7.  But have you heard any Thanksgiving tunes?  You might hear “Ode To Billie Joe,” but there’s no “Ode To Tom Turkey.”

One way of expressing joy and happiness is to sing.  Since Thanksgiving is a positive holiday celebrating the good things in your life, you’d think we’d have lots of songs to celebrate how blessed we are.  Other than “We Gather Together,” “Come Ye Thankful People, Come” and “Over The River And Through the Wood,” there’s not much to sing on Turkey Day.

Never one to merely complain about something without taking action, I am up for the challenge. I’ve penned a fun, family song that all ages will enjoy singing around the heavily laden Thanksgiving table.  Since Christmas has pretty much horned in on Thanksgiving, I’ve used a familiar tune from a hilarious Christmas song to go with my lyrics.  Sing it with me, will you?

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GRANDMA GOT RUN OVER BY A GOBBLER

Grandma got run over by a gobbler

Cooking food for our Thanksgiving feast

You can say there’s no need for Mylanta

As for me and Grandpa, relief please.

 

She’d been cooking too much turkey

And we begged, “Throw in the towel!”

But she’d gotten soo ambitious

So she hurried out the door in search of fowl.

 

When they found her Thursday morning

At the scene of the attack

There were claw marks on her apron

And turkey feathers sticking from her cap.

 

Grandma got run over by a gobbler

Cooking food for our Thanksgiving feast

You can says there’s no need for Mylanta

As for me and Grandpa, relief please.

 

Now we’re all so proud of Grandpa

He’s been slaving o’er Grandma’s stove

See him in there making stuffing

Basting Butterballs with cousin Joe.

 

It’s not easy without Grandma

All the family’s hungry for her yams

And we just can’t help but wonder

Should we serve the Tom or eat some ham?

 

Grandma got run over by a gobbler

Cooking food for our Thanksgiving feast

You can say there’s no need for Mylanta

As for me and Grandpa, relief please.

 

Now the meal is on the table

And the goblets full of wine

And a big and pretty platter

That’s just the spot for Grandma’s bird divine.

 

Grandma got run over by a gobbler

Cooking food for our Thanksgiving feast

You can say there’s no need for Mylanta

As for me and Grandpa, relief please.

 

I’ve warned all my friends and neighbors

It’s a better workout at the gym

You should never chase a turkey

Who knows the Thursday menu highlights him.

 

Grandma got run over by a gobbler

Cooking food for our Thanksgiving feast

You can say there’s no need for Mylanta

As for me and Grandpa, relief please.*

 

Happy Thanksgiving to all and to all a good bite (of turkey)!

*Copyright 2015

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Talk Turkey

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This week Americans will celebrate Thanksgiving, a national holiday in the United States since 1863. Thanksgiving is pretty much synonymous with turkey, the bird gracing the platter in the middle of the holiday table. But this year, the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving gathering may not be poultry but politics, i.e., discussions (arguments?) about the area of the world in which Turkey is located. That’s Turkey with a capital “T” as in the country and not a bird Butterball is hawking. I mean what family gathering isn’t complete without heated debate between blood relatives who make each other’s blood boil with opposite stances on hot button political issues?

In case you have been living under a rock, perhaps one the size of, say, Plymouth Rock, it may behoove you to learn that hordes of Syrian refugees are in Europe and looking for a new home. Uncle Sam’s neighborhood has been mentioned as a possibility. Some kind-hearted and compassionate Americans have become cheerleaders for Welcome Wagon and can’t wait to deliver a nice, piping hot casserole to these refugees upon their arrival. Other, more security conscious Americans, are urging that we pull up the drawbridge to protect the womenfolk and children from murderous heathens who could blow us to kingdom come while we are at a concert or out to dinner.  Gosh darn.  Now while eating our Thanksgiving meal we not only have to decide what kind of pie to have for dessert (pumpkin? pecan? apple?), but we have to take a position on life-altering decisions for thousands of Syrian refugees?

Shifting the table talk to the presidential race is not an option.  That change will lead right back into the same debate because, of course, a candidate’s stance  on foreign policy issues is a key consideration.  Just ask poor Ben Carson.  He has been shot down like a Thanksgiving turkey, plunging from his #1 spot in the polls.  Why?  Perhaps it is because, as one of his top advisers claims, the good doctor is unable to process “one iota of intelligent information about the Middle East.”   That’s a bit harsh; he’s a neurosurgeon for crying out loud.  I doubt Middle East Affairs 101 was an elective in med school.  And how many of us could pick Syria out on a map if asked to do so?  (HINT:  It borders Turkey.)

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Instead of attempting to solve the world’s problems, maybe we Americans should just take the day of Thanksgiving to well, simply give thanks.  The fact that we are alive and (relatively) safe (for the moment) is reason enough to thank our Creator.  If we knew an iota about terrorism, we’d be thanking our Creator EVERY DAY for our safety.  Think ISIS is all we have to worry about?  HA!  The U.S. Department of State has an extensive “menu” of FTO’s (Foreign Terrorist Organizations) which it  has helpfully listed for us on its website.  Choose from approximately 60 named groups including Abu Nidal, Hamas, Boko Haram (currently ranked the #1 deadliest FTO), the Real (as opposed to the fake) Irish Republican Army, Shining Path, and the Palestinian Liberation Front, to give you security nightmares in addition to indigestion from your Thanksgiving feast.

The menu choice is yours this week.  You can have dinner with political debate on the side.  Or you can embrace the essence of the holiday and count your blessings while consuming copious comestibles (and presumably not counting your calories).  Let’s take time to be  thankful for life and provisions–whether white or dark meat; peacefully co-exist with your relatives and perhaps an annoying in-law for the day by avoiding divisive topics.   Pray for peace in and around Turkey while having a  piece of turkey.IMP0190013

 

 

 

 

 

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My Cup Runneth Over (With Controversy)

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Happy Holidays!!! Or is it? We haven’t even hit Thanksgiving yet, and I’m already hearing “Jingle Bells” and “Have A Holly Jolly Christmas” on the radio. But it’s kind of hard to have a happy holiday when there’s controversy rather than snowflakes in the air. Thank you Starbucks for providing us something to discuss other than what everyone wants to find in his/her stocking on Christmas morning.

Alot of red is visible these days, but it isn’t just on the new holiday cups debuted by Starbucks. Apparently some Christians are seeing red because this design move is seen as an attack on Christmas. Huh? I must have missed that verse in Matthew 2 where the Three Wise Men stopped off at Starbucks to pick up an appropriately decorated coffee cup before heading off to the stable to visit Baby Jesus.

Christmas and the decorations which are or, more accurately right now AREN’T, on a coffee cup are not inexorably tied together. I am appalled that some Christians find that the essence of Christmas is dependent on the appearance of ornaments and snowflakes on a to go coffee cup. In fact, Starbucks probably did Christians a favor by removing those designs. The true meaning of Christmas is the simple story of the birth of a baby in Bethlehem. The first Christmas did not have reindeer prancing about, ornaments hung around the stable, etc. For Christians Jesus is the reason for the season. What better than a plain red cup, say the color of blood which would ultimately be shed per the Christian faith, to call attention to the season?

Sadly, this controversy harshly calls our attention to the fact that Christmas in our society has become a material holiday. It is all about THINGS–presents, trees, decorations, etc. If your biggest concern at Christmas is what appears on the cup holding your tall white chocolate mocha from Starbucks, then you, like the Grinch, have no idea what Christmas is really about.

Everyone’s heard the line “What would Jesus do?” I propose in this case we ask, “Would Jesus care?” My personal opinion is that the designs on a Starbucks coffee cup are not on His top ten list of things to address. He is probably more concerned about the downtrodden in society who can’t afford to go to Starbucks and buy a coffee no matter what kind of cup in which it is served.

And looking at the Bible gives additional support for the fact that the design of the cup isn’t what’s important. The beloved 23rd Psalm written by David shows that God provides because he says, “My cup runneth over.” Note that David did not take time to describe what his shepherd’s cup looks like. Tha container is irrelevant. It’s what’s contained therein that’s important, i.e., God’s love and provision.

The cup controversy, bottom line, compels the conclusion that superficiality rules. Do you really go to Starbucks for the cup or for the hot beverage that it contains? As my mother always said, “It’s what’s on the inside that counts.” This Christmas Christians need to be concerned about what the cup of our faith holds and not about the container in which the holiday comes or the cup in which a Starbucks coffee is served.

 

Movie Menu

popcornFood and films are two of my favorite things. It’s even more fun when you combine them. A movie just isn’t complete without some buttered popcorn to enjoy while glued to the silver screen.

So a normal combination of food and film is snacks during a movie. But what if you got creative and made a meal from food in the movies? I challenged myself to come up with a menu exclusively containing food which appeared in films. It was fun but harder than you might think.

Place your order!

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BREAKFAST:

raw eggs (drunk by Sylvester Stallone in “Rocky”)

real, not instant, grits (key testimony at trial in “My Cousin Vinny”)

Danish and coffee (the choice of Holly Golightly in “Breakfast At Tiffany’s”)

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LUNCH:

Tots (if you can get them away from “Napoleon Dynamite”)

2 slices of pizza (eat them folded over a la Tony Manero in “Saturday Night Fever”)

Vienna sausages (roasted in the woods in “The Blair Witch Project”)

$5 milkshake (investigated by John Travolta and Uma Thurman in “Pulp Fiction”)

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DINNER:

Gruel (if you are on a diet, enjoy this “Oliver” fare)

Ratatouille (hopefully not prepared by a rodent as in “Ratatouille”)

Whole potatoes (eaten with ketchup or Vicodin in “The Martian”)

Mashed potatoes (played with by Richard Dreyfuss in “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”)

Peas (use a fork and not your hands as “Edward Scissorhands” tried)

Chicken (eaten every night for dinner according to Grandpa in “Little Miss Sunshine”)

Turkey (get it before the Bumpus’ dogs in “A Christmas Story” do)

Spaghetti and meatballs (romantic plate for two shared in “Lady and the Tramp”)

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DESSERT:

Peach pie (made from scratch in “Labor Day”)

Honey lavender ice cream (made by Meryl Streep and enjoyed by Alec Baldwin in “It’s Complicated”)

Chocolate pie (contained a secret ingredient in “The Help”)

A Box of Chocolates (neither you nor “Forrest Gump” know what you’re going to get)

While it is entertaining to come up with these menu items, I think I would prefer to eat real food instead of reel food.