Thursday, November 24, 2011

Time to Deal with the Turkey*

It's the week of Thanksgiving and I must endure the seasonal complaint from the one son who thinks any time poultry graces the table, it is a personal slight.  Never mind that I make his favorite dessert, it is the bird itself that offends.  

"Why do we have to have turkey?"  He laments. Having researched the holiday and mentioned that this was not the only thing served.  However, he doesn't necessarily think venison, lobster or clams are viable options either.  After being offered alternatives, he acknowledged that he doesn't want historical, he just wants this traditional part omitted.  "Why can't we have steak? I'd be thankful for that." The complaint gets some traction with this alternate proposal from his older brother. 

Now I'm a reasonable mother.  I have explained that he need not eat any turkey ever.  But children, being children do not consider compromise meeting the adult halfway; let me rephrase that, children being children do not consider compromise.   He made me a helpful list of the foods traditionally served at this holiday in November that he doesn't like.  It included the following:

Stuffing (Chestnut and/or Cornbread)
Mashed Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes
Cranberry relish, jelly, Cranberries
Green beans
Roasted vegetables
Crescent rolls

When I pointed out that this left only Pumpkin pie and whipped cream, he hastily grabbed the list and added Cool Whip --so I would know the whipped cream must be fresh.  "It would cut down on the dishes and the calories." he offered helpfully, "....and the expense." 

Now I know that sarcasm is not a recommended parenting technique; but clearly, gastronomic empathy for any taste buds other than his own was lacking.  It was time for something drastic.

"How about I just serve you Captain Crunch?" I asked.


"Sure.  Cold cereal. No fuss. No work.  No worries.  You like Captain Crunch and there would be no offending smells in your kitchen.  You know, there are brothers and sisters who Don't like pumpkin chiffon pie.  This way, no one would smell something they don't like or have to endure seeing  a food they didn't want on the holiday."

"But..."  he was crumbling as he envisioned that once a year favorite pie not happening.

"In fact, we could make it a tradition for Christmas and Easter and every holiday.  I bet if I wrote that we were having this as our feast, we could have a commercial with General Mills...." 

"Well....maybe we  could have apple pie for my sisters who don't like pumpkin." he started to break.

"It would be okay if we had pies you don't like?" 

"I guess so..." 

"What about me? I can't eat sweets right now. What will I eat?" I asked.

"Can you eat turkey?"
"Yes.  But I also will need vegetables, as I can't eat the breads or the sweet potatoes."

"I guess we can have a turkey."

"And my folks.  They really like chestnut stuffing and giblet gravy..."

"And your sister lives for making the mashed potatoes and your brother LOVES cranberries."
"I guess so..."

"Don't forget, your dad loves mushrooms and Paul devours crescent rolls and broccoli."
"So....we have to make the whole dinner?" he asked fearfully.

"I'm afraid so..."

"But promise me one thing?" he asked.
"What's that sweetie?"

"You'll use fresh whipped cream, not a can or Cool Whip?"   
I nodded.

And he smiled and left the table, the peace talks had been victorious in his opinion.  I'm now thankful that 1) I had enough family to get each dish back, 2) he didn't call my bluff and 3) this holiday only comes once a year.

Originally run on Nov. 21, 2010.

1 comment:

MightyMom said...

you need to apply for a job in Wash...maybe you could take BO's place every time he travels in search of "peace"!!!


Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!