As with any good revenge tale, it all starts with A TURKEY!
That got a sputter from you, am I right?
This story started almost 40 years ago. The year was 1976 or 1977 or maybe 1978. I’m so old now I can’t remember when the actual year was. What I do remember is that I had a friend Violet who invited me over for dinner. Violet’s stepmom used to cook turkeys.
It’s pretty easy to insert ourselves into this scene. A woman in the kitchen before Thanksgiving, fussing over the turkey, pots everywhere, sweat on her brow while the husband, kids and a friend named Kellie, sit in the parlour reading and listening to Gaither Gospel Hour.
Now, picture the needle of a record player, loudly screeching across the vinyl.
Yup, now we are in the place to picture what happened; at least at Violet’s house.
Stepmom cursing husband, kids, guests and everything under the sun because SHE is doing all the work and no one, I mean no one gives a hoot. Seriously, the GAH!s (give a hoots) are popping the roof off the house, folks.
Fast forward, to later in the day, when relatives start showing up. The frazzled woman puts on the sweetest, most serene smile. Her voice is the same tone as crushed velvet. She hugs the same kids she eye-rolled out of the room earlier.
I’m going to insert a current day caption and say, I’ve seen so many episodes of Modern Family and realize that Violet’s stepmom may have had a healthy supply of Zanax or was just plain cray, cray. “Cray, cray” is an urban slang that signifies someone’s craziness to a whole new level. It is the ultimate second power of crazy.
Either way, what I do know, is that all those years ago, I decided that if you got a split personality when you cook turkeys, I wasn’t having anything to do with it.
When I make vows, they aren’t just some wishy-washy things. No sir, I make sure it’s something people will talk about long after I’m gone. Four decades ago, I decided that at the end of my life I would be KNOWN as the oldest living woman who’d never cooked a turkey. I mean at the end of it all there will always be someone kinder, more generous, funnier, prettier (you get my gist) but I don’t think I’ll be competing with too many other women in the no turkey cooking life goal.
In a couple of years, I will be entering my fifth decade of life, and so far, I have NEVER, EVER COOKED A TURKEY. I’ve cooked a goose, but no turkeys.
Did this vow destine me to marry a vegetarian? Or become best friends with someone who loves to cook turkeys? Or set my trajectory for the ultimate revenge?
Quite naturally, the whole turkey thing allowed me to disassociate from holiday craziness, turkeys and people like Violet’s stepmom. Lastly but not leastly, I’ve become known (like an urban legend kind of known) for hosting great parties and get-togethers.
In September, we hosted an event called QUASI THANKSGIVING for 13 people.
Rather than cook, I gathered. Friends and family we cherish.
The food prep got divided by everyone. Dave the introvert hung out in our kitchen with his oldest friend who also enjoys staying in the background. Our garage converted into a bar, mini fridge and all. The lawn transformed into a mega dining table.
Dave brought out his vintage radio and other reclaimed tables he’s made.
My daughter and I raided my Scottish mother-in-law’s hope chest and decorated everything.
We even scammed thistles from the garden and made posies for each place setting.
I was in the house at one point, and all I could hear was everyone laughing. That’s when the wave of sweet revenge started to flow.
We all stood together prior to eating, and I gave a speech where I explained my turkey story and resulting pledge and mentioned that when I was listening to everyone giggle and laugh, I thought my heart would burst. It was the most beautiful sound. We ate, drank and had THE BEST time. I sat around my table and looked at each person lovingly. I know THE BEST people, and I LOVE having them at my house.
Everyone experienced the feeling. Not because we were going for perfect. In fact, because we weren’t. No fake, no phony and no crazy at our house. Just fun.
One of the guests is throwing her version of this get-together this weekend for her massive family. We are planning for the 2018 release already.
What are you doing Labour Day 2018? We’ve got lots of room at the table.
Princess and The Yard Ape wishes all our readers the Ultimate Revenge -THANKSGIVING.