Monday, November 30, 2009

So we had our German Thanksgiving. It was nice, albeit having to explain each dish I had prepared. Cranberry… yes, I know they look big. No, they are not from an actual forest in Sweden. Yes, there is a lot of sugar in them. Yes, a lot. And that? That is stuffing. It’s a bit like a Knödel, just all broken up, and with celery - not the celery root, the actual stalks. (Telling people about the celery makes a lot of them put the serving spoon down before taking any.) One year I didn’t tell anyone, and one person (Oh all right, it was my mother-in-hell, I mean law) Grabbed, and I mean literally GRABBED her glass of water and gulped it down. What was that, what did I just bit on, WHAT WAS IT?? (Did she think it was a cockroach?) And then there are the bright orange sweet potatoes. I like to call them the polite bite dish. Who, on the face of God’s green earth takes a teaspoon of yams? Germans, that’s who. And the Gravy goes on EVERYTHING people! I don’t even bother serving pumpkin pie. The Pumpkin Pie -yes, I even capitalize it - is Holy to me. And I will not have it sacrileged by a bunch of “isn’t she serving spätzle??” Germans.
All in all, I did get a lot of compliments. However, the after-dinner Thanksgiving tradition of undoing your pants and flopping on the couch doesn’t go over well here. I had to stay buttoned.
The day after with my German husband is always a treat. It is time to put the furniture Back In Order. I need to back up a bit and tell you about the 24 hour argument/anxiety attack on Uwe’s part each and every time I invite a lot of people over. It requires setting up another table, and moving the coffee table out of the way. This, my friends, is drama. Drama, drama, drama. It will CHANGE the order of life as we know it. Or at the very least, my living room. And furniture DOES NOT get pushed around. If we’re not allowed to shove the furniture around, then why, pray tell, did he put little round felt things on the bottom of everything we own, including the coffee maker.
WHY I ask you, why? And yes, I do wait for him to leave the house and PUSH it around. And yes, I do lie and tell him Alexander helped me CARRY the furniture.
But the next day, bright-and-early-first-thing-no-time-for-coffee, Rainman and I put the house back in order. Jawohl.
But wait, there’s more… more food that is. Leftovers. Now I ask you, are they, or are they not the best part of Thanksgiving? Honestly.
But Uwe has this thing about leftovers. They’re, well, left over. I put them outside on the picnic table. No room in out tiny German Fridge for a roasting pan full of leftovers.
So the kids and I were digging in about noon, and sin of all sins, the last person left the top askew on the pan. And the Saran Wrap from the cranberry had flown across the backyard. Now, not only do we have leftovers, we have exposed leftovers.
That was all he could take. It was, so to speak, the feather that broke the turkey’s back. I got him calmed down, and suggested he go to the sauna. There is nothing like sitting naked with your cousin Ralf and twenty other sweaty people to ease your nerves. It seemed to do the trick. And today, (day two) I shall dispose of all leftovers on the premises. In three weeks we’ll be having a Christmas Party. This will not only require more furniture relocation, but the hanging of colored lights. The more anal he gets, the more lights I hang.

Christmas lights for the house - $150.00
Timer for outdoor lights - $15.00
The look on Uwe’s face when he sees an inflatable Sponge Bob Square Pants on the roof atop 2,456 blinking lights? Priceless.
There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else, there’s Mastercard.