Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Thanksgiving Dinner

The ham was in the oven. Smells of dressing, sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie wafted through the house. Yellow and orange leaves at the center of the dinner table surrounded red candles. Knocking from the front door stirred my attention. The family arrived. But wait. Peering out over the faces of the hungry crew I saw a long line forming that stretched down my porch, along the driveway and the side of the road where the cedar and oak trees hid the rest. This was not a joyous holiday of ham, turkey and football. This was a nightmare.

Miles and miles of people came in until I suffered a deep panic attack and secluded myself in the bedroom. The room was full. Food covered my bed and dripped down the chins of my guests. It looked like I stumbled on a den of hungry hyenas gnawing on freshly killed game.

In the corner the cat suffered my fate. People invaded her space causing unhappiness. Pissed, in fact. I grabbed my furry friend and exited to the outdoors where the air was cold, damp and nasty. We found a spot where we could shimmy under the house through a crawl space where we could share Thanksgiving dinner with the field mice, possums and mothballs.

After the moist ground soaked my pants and matted her fur we devised a plan to rid our house of the invading varmints that insisted on eating everything including the blue hockey puck size deodorant in my toilet. We talked and she agreed. Most of the work was hers and all I needed to do was hold open the door. Escaping the dungeon we arrived at the front door.
I asked her if she was ready and she meowed in agreement. Ok then.

Opening the door I hurled the cat in with all her claws and teeth exposed. The nine-pound razor blade started the assault. She landed on my father, tattooing his left cheek with her claws. Trickles of blood fell to his shoulder turning his white t-shirt a pale red. He grabbed the cat by the scruff of the neck, her legs extended. She hissed as she became airborne and bounced on a few more patrons, slicing their ears and noses along the way. I looked and saw a remnant of someone's eye dangling from her right front paw. She shook her leg and the eye fell to the floor. From the screams of my little nephew I suspected he was the one with the hole in his head.

People screamed and ran out of the house, tripping on those who fell, breaking hands, arms and legs. Plates flew through the air and a dish of candied yams landed on my sister causing second-degree burns. A pile of scared people gathered on my front lawn, as they would trip on the front step. Within five minutes the house was clear, except for the cat and I.

I picked her up and placed her on the dinner table next to my chair, my rightful spot, at the head of the table. The centerpiece was broke and bits of food and drink stained the tablecloth. Reaching out I picked a juicy turkey leg and placed it before the cat. I put some ham, cooked by now, on my cracked plate. My glass held wine as her glass held milk. I ate and she purred as we listened to the moans outside.


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