Kueppers: Ways to make the most of a COVID-19 Thanksgiving

This year, we all have to change our plans a little bit, but that does not mean we can’t still have a great Thanksgiving.


by Henry Kueppers

Thanksgiving: A holiday that marks the beginnings of mass genocide and discrimination of Native Americans but for some reason is symbolized by turkey and cranberry sauce. Thanksgiving is a lot like Hollywood’s 1989 film “Weekend at Bernie’s”: You do not know why people celebrate it, but all the adults in your family are really into it. If Thanksgiving was a high schooler, it would be the shy kid that is put into a group with you, and at first you think, “Hey, maybe Thanksgiving is not all that bad,” so you try to talk with them. Then, you discover that Thanksgiving is one of those kids who likes foreign films and alternative rock and tries to explain everything about culture to you, and then you think, “Alright, you are kind of the worst, let’s just wrap up this whole thing.”

I could go on and on roasting Thanksgiving, but at the end of the day, it is still a national holiday that many of us observe and celebrate. However, this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Thanksgiving has changed for families across the country. Many have to settle for a Zoom-style Thanksgiving dinner in place of going home. Nevertheless, Thanksgiving can still be celebrated no matter where you are, and that is why I have taken the time to make a list of things you can do to still achieve all the spirit and magic of a regular Thanksgiving.

Watch a Thanksgiving movie or TV show

Unfortunately, while Hollywood has a surplus of Christmas-themed films, Thanksgiving movies are few and far between. Furthermore, for some reason, no one seems to have capitalized on a Thanksgiving TV sitcom either. (The CW has not responded to my spec script for my original show, “Gossip Gravy” about a bunch of rich New York teenagers who like to party only on Thanksgiving.) Therefore, you have to be a little creative when you pick a Thanksgiving movie or TV show. Luckily, TV is a magical medium that can make you feel immersed in any world that you choose. That is why, for that authentic Thanksgiving feeling, I suggest you check out shows like “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” or “The Jerry Springer Show.” Both are excellent, for they are filled with unnecessary yelling, uncontrollable anger, and you never know when someone might get smacked in the face with a curling iron — just like a real Thanksgiving dinner!

Roleplay as your favorite drunk relatives

It may feel lonely to be separated from family this holiday season, but a simple costume change can bring your family to you wherever you are! And who knows your family better than you do? So, go on! Dress up as your favorite drunk relatives (I am going as my uncle’s new girlfriend, Topaz!) and let the night take you to weird and probably uncomfortable places.

Tell a controversial secret

Everyone knows Thanksgiving is the perfect time to tell all your conservative family members secrets regarding such sensitive topics like sexuality, political beliefs and your favorite Jonas brother. Make sure it’s a real juicy one — something that will make some of your family members question where things went wrong or if they will ever speak to you again. (I know I wouldn’t speak to any family members who told me Kevin Jonas was their favorite!)

Question religion! No matter what religion you and your family observe, Thanksgiving was meant to be the time you look at your devout Catholic parents and say, “Honestly, the Bible is wack as hell. I am gonna start following the scriptures of ‘Barefoot Contessa’!” The best part is, your parents will not be able to smite you in person!

Clog a toilet and say nothing about it

After a hearty Thanksgiving meal, we all know that one family member is going to sit down, relax and crack the porcelain on the toilet so severely that not even all the king’s horses and all the king’s men could put that shit back together again. But, in true holiday spirit, when you make sure that the toilet looks like Chernobyl in a cup, you can not tell anyone else about it! You just wash your hands of the situation, leave and play innocent should someone mention it.

Frame grandpa for double homicide

That old geezer had it coming anyways! Remind yourself that youth is for the young as you place a dead body in the backseat of your Grandpa’s 1999 Chevy Cadillac. As you bury the murder weapon and place an anyonmous phone call to the local authorities, do not feel guilty. Remind yourself that you are gonna live forever and enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving.