The gravy-soaked holiday is over.
The fine china’s already put away, far-flung family’s gone back home, No. 1 is at college again, the house is back to its old, blankets-and-used-Kleenex-strewn-everywhere, crack-den-looking self. You know what I miss most?
Which is not something I ever thought I’d say.
A decade ago, holidays meant sugar-fueled, amped up, out-of-control people. And then the kids. Whew, dealing with the kids.
“STAY OUT OF MY ROOM!!!!”
“YOU ATE THE LAST OF THE CRANBERRY APPLESAUCE!!”
“I HATE YOU!!!”
The fighting was nonstop, and so I’d shut myself in the pantry and pull out a piece of my super-secret-stash chocolate from behind the can of expired white fungus that I keep around on the shelf for this very reason. It was exhausting.
The shouting this year sounded even meaner.
“ARE YOU KIDDING ME???”
“HA HA! YOU’RE ALL BOTS! I’M SO MUCH BETTER THAN YOU!!!”
It was glorious.
Spiked with laughter and loud and rowdy. Our family togetherness may look a little too “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” to outsiders, but the kids were playing games with us and while Gen-X me is normally anti-technology (because it hates me and refuses to cooperate) I love the weirdly clever… online thing? app? I don’t even know what to call it exactly, but you sign in on some sort of device like a cell phone or tablet and you can play games RIGHT ON THE TV. It’s a modern miracle.
There’s Trivial Pursuit or this goofy game that is kind of like 21st century Mad Libs, but you create raps instead of stories by filling in blanks and then animated robots perform them and winners are voted upon. Yes, it’s as weird as it sounds, it’s also hilarious. See below a few excerpts from the Thanksgiving throw down:
The rap battles are almost as intense as the ones in real life, except mamas don’t get dissed* and no one gets shot.
My raps were bad — even worse than normal — because I was so swept up in listening to everyone else talk smack to each other and laughing and I couldn’t help but think how happy I was in that extraordinarily ear-splittingly loud moment, so I couldn’t quite concentrate on making sick rhymes. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.
*Welllllll, I guess that part’s not true because I feel like I get strongly mocked.
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