WFB Ombudsman: Memories of Thanksgiving Past

• November 28, 2013 12:00 pm


Thanksgiving? I’m not a fan. If what they say is true, this holiday is little more than a celebration of what I believe was a boneheaded political decision on the part of the pilgrims. Dining with the enemy is not Biff’s idea of an event worth commemorating. I certainly don’t approve of it being taught in our nation’s schools.

The elite in the political class want us to believe Thanksgiving is about traditional American values. Hogwash. These are the same people who insist Ronald Reagan was a conservative. (For an actor? Maybe. Otherwise, give me a break.) Thanksgiving isn’t the worst American holiday—in theory—but we have surrendered whatever wholesome qualities it might have had to the jackals of Hollywood and the National Football League, who use the gathering of families across the county to bombard us with leftist ideologies.

There isn’t a whole lot for real Americans to be thankful for these days. The government has re-opened. MitchCare is destroying the economy. My friend and bridge partner Kanye West is catching heat for daring to dish hard truths about love. It’s almost impossible to find a quality upright bass for less than two grand. The GOP is being led by some lightweight named Ted Cruz.

On the other hand, I’m glad the Obamanots are encouraging people to argue politics with family over the holidays. If only there was a seat for Biff at every table. I remember dating some lib chick around the time Clinton got elected, and being invited to Thanksgiving dinner with her parents. Dad was a draft dodging lit professor and mom was a "former" Sandinista. We argued a bit, and the pecan pie was still warm by the time they invited me to move in and establish residency for a city council run. I won the seat.

I’m thankful for the memories. In 1987 I spent Thanksgiving, and nearly the whole month of November, in a Copenhagen jail after "misbehaving" at an amusement park. I must have charmed one of the female guards, because she stuck an adorably hand-drawn American flag on a toothpick in my glass of Gammel Dansk one morning, and spelled out the word "HAPPY" using pickles. The local constabulary was mightily embarrassed once they found out who I was. Now Biff gets free rides for life.

Thanksgiving came twice in the slums of Havana, where I co-managed a salsa studio and pined for a clean shot on Castro that would never come. Would’ve been 1971-73, just before the Yom Kippur War. I can’t be certain whether it happened precisely on Thanksgiving Day, but I’ll never forget that rain-soaked frolic on the pier, the night I met Manuela. She was the beautiful poison, the drug I’d always craved and feared. Manuela plunged the muddy fathoms of my soul, and spoke to me in languages I never knew existed, in words that human decency precludes me from repeating here. I quit the salsa gig, developed a cigar habit, and gave thanks for Manuela, even after she tried to have me killed.

These days I’m thankful for the little things, like hanging out with my good buddy Ken. A few Saturdays ago, we were lugging a couple of six packs back to my apartment in Adams Morgan when Ken ducked into an alley to relieve himself. I figured I’d chug a quick one to get the night going, but was thwarted by the European-style pry-off bottle caps. Good old Ken, having concluded his business and noticing my distress, snatched the bottle from my hand, and chucked a suds fastball into the passenger side of a parked Toyota Prius. We shared a laugh and marched into the night, full of thanks. And free.

Published under: Humor, Parody