Since Thanksgiving has never been a favorite holiday of mind, to say the very least, I thought maybe dedicating this week’s Top 10 to Thanksgiving, thus inspiring me to find the things I do enjoy about the holiday, would be a good way to shake the Turkey Day blues from my bones. So, here it goes…
My Top 10 :: The Thanksgiving Edition
1. Home for the Holidays
Without a doubt, Home for the Holidays is one of my all-time favorite holiday films. The first time I saw it I thought “wow, someone finally gets how Thanksgiving is!” – kudos to the short story writer it came from (Chris Radant), the screenwriter (W.D. Richter), the director (Jodie Foster) and a tremendous cast. I especially love the sibling relationship/friendship between Claudia (Holly Hunter) and Tommy (Robert Downey, Jr.).
2. The Macy’s Day Parade
Though I may not watch it every year, there is a huge soft spot in me for the Macy’s Day Parade. Growing up, I would wake up early on Thanksgiving to find my Grandfather ready and waiting for the parade to start. We would watch it together, he always commenting on the marching bands, and me, enthralled with the big blow-up characters – the parade always reminds me of him.
3. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
There was always familial fighting in my childhood Thanksgivings, but there was also always A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. There was something both soothing and empowering about Vince Guaraldi’s holiday Charlie Brown themes which would take me away from it all, albeit briefly, to a place where the kids and the animals ruled, and all the adults were just a bunch of incoherent mumbles droning away in the background. When it came on the television it was something I was thankful for.
4. Thanksgiving in The OC
Growing up in “The OC“, I never had a Thanksgiving quite like this. I would have loved a little Seth Cohen and Captain Oats, especially when I was a teenager. Seth’s clumsy dealings with the unexpected attention from two girls is funny, awkward and, well, kind of darling.
5. Thanksgiving according to Spike
We get a little bit of everything – Angel lurks, Willow struggles with guilt, Buffy makes a bear and Xander gets the funny syphilis. Oh, and Spike gives us a unsympathetic rant about his Thanksgiving feelings. All that angst, well, it must be Thanksgiving.
6. Kind & Generous (live) :: Natalie Merchant
One of my favorite singer-songwriters ever, singing a song that sings of the things I try to gift my family on this day. Being grateful in our lives, appreciating the things we have, and each other. We are all so quick to complain and talk about what is wrong, and what we don’t have, but a moment given to what we love and are thankful for can create such change.
7. Thanksgiving with Friends
So many funny Thanksgiving moments on Friends, some that I forgot, and some that live in my TV-memory bank forever. My youngest daughter has taken a liking to the show, and often runs it in the background while she’s doing other things, reminding me how familiar these characters are to me, in a good way. Which is your favorite?
8. Felicity’s Thanksgiving
A very 90’s Thanksgiving courtesy of Felicity’s first Thanksgiving away at college in New York. So many great characters here interacting in awkward moments, stolen kisses in bathrooms, reuniting daughters and fathers, and ex-girlfriends. This episode reminded me of a Thanksgiving I spent with my friends around the time I first lived on my own, the sense of a found family of misfits we all felt, and how in the midst of it I felt so grown-up and free.
9. A Deep-Fried Korean Thanksgiving
The one and only Thanksgiving episode from our friends in Stars Hollow, but it is a good one. Best part is that through some clever storytelling we get to drop in on all the eccentric friends and family with Lorelai and Rory, as they make their way through too many Thanksgivings. My favorite stop? Luke’s diner, of course.
10. Pieces of April
Another reminder of living on my own for the first time, Pieces of April is a lesser known gem of a movie. I love the small details and moments within the film that resonate so strongly with my memories of my first apartment, the struggle I had between creating my own reality and keeping some “traditions” in my life. Its hard growing up sometimes.