Thanksgiving Fad Has Me Hanging With The Babies


Well, that’s over — Thanksgiving, I mean. I hope yours was happy; mine was kind of different.

This year, my daughter decided to hold “Friendsgiving,” which, evidently, is the next big thing. Instead of being forced to sit around a table with your family for one stinkin’ day a year, now you invite people you truly care about instead. Humph.

I liked it the old way, where you never knew what was going to happen because relatives are so freakin’ unpredictable. The day started out, of course, with everyone dressed nicely and coming to the door with the expectation of turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and football, with kids running around underfoot, but once those expectations were met, and people were left to their own devices… well, that’s when you really got to know your relatives.

You got to see how much people can change in just one year. Delightful little children had become surly teenagers. Surly teenagers had become intelligent adults. Intelligent adults had morphed into annoying know-it-alls and, last but not least, annoying know-it-alls had devolved into people who could not find their glasses, teeth or the bathroom… in time. For students of humanity like myself, it was a cornucopia of fun.

But now we have Friendsgiving, where everyone is approximately the same age and I am the only one looking for my glasses, teeth and the bathroom. It would be downright depressing, except for the babies.

I can relate to the babies — they cannot find their pacifiers, have no teeth and their bathroom travels with them. We struggle through dinner together — What’s this? Edamame? Is that a real food? — and soon it’s just me and the babies on the couch together, playing peekaboo. They are as enthralled with this game as I am.

While the adults in the dining room are playing games where they have to show off their immense knowledge of trivia or do math in their heads at lightning speed, the babies are hysterical with joy whenever I am able to bat my way out of a blanket. “She’s not gone forever after all! She’s back! Do it again!” Their giggles are infectious, and pretty soon the babies and I are rolling on the couch, drooling.

“Is everything all right in here?” one of the adults will ask, poking their nose in just as the babies and I are close to peeing ourselves.

“Yes,” I’ll answer guiltily.

“Hiccup,” one of the babies will answer, peeing itself.

When they leave, we immediately resume the game. The babies try to pick up the blanket and hand it to me, and I try to fit my whole head inside it. Once hidden, I say, “PeeeeeeeeekaBOO!” and yank off the blanket. My hair is a static mess, and I’m grinning like an idiot. We double over in laughter.

Family? Friends? Food? Just give me the babies, and I’m good.