Monday, December 22, 2008

The Not Christmas Dinner

For several years, a relative of mine has held what I refer to as the ‘Not Christmas Dinner’. It started out as a family brunch, which was always held the Saturday before Christmas day. Relative coordinated the brunch because she felt she couldn’t handle preparing a dinner. I can totally understand that.

But as the years passed, the time for the brunch got later and later, until it became dinner. Yet Relative refuses to call it dinner, despite the yummy offerings of sweet potatoes, stuffing, string beans and desserts. A dinner is something that is held at one big table. And because Relative doesn’t have a table large enough to accommodate everyone, we tend to scatter about the house with our plates. Foolishly, I once suggested that Relative should simply make this the Christmas Dinner, but I was shut down with just a look. Well, excuuuuuse me.

No matter how odd this family tradition is, I tend to enjoy it. Where else can I go to see my cousin Chanelle show off her new breast implants? Or watch the old ladies try to teach my rhythmless relative‘The Bump’, cause you know, it is the latest dance craze. The party ain’t over until Cousin Sputnik’s eyes are red, Aunt M curses someone out and Uncle R sneaks away from his wife to call his girlfriend. Good times.

Things were weird this year because one of my aunts recently announced she’s in the process of leaving her husband. This isn’t surprising, since marriages tend to be over in the blink of an eye in my family. In fact, a family gathering isn’t complete until someone starts complaining about one of their exes. But this aunt is someone who is above the drama. She never has a bad thing about anyone, even at times when she should. She and hubby have been together as long as I’ve been alive, so I’m truly surprised. It was also surprising to watch her join in on the ‘worthless ex’ conversations. So sad.

Anyway, the food was good and so was the conversation. I have a ton of leftovers that will last me until … well, Christmas.

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