It's Thanksgiving 2016 and I am currently sitting on a vaguely comfortable couch in the livng room of my in-laws house in the farthest outskirts of Seminole, Oklahoma. It's the afternoon and I am wonderng what special type of hell today will bring.
This place is like a goddamned black hole. It is an honest to god black hole. I get no cell phone reception at all, so no texts or phone calls whatsoever. Not that that matters, really, because it's not like I actually KNOW anyone who WOULD call or text me. Maaaaaybe my parents but prrrobably not.
My in-laws also have no internet here, so that's "fun." Actually, let me clarify ... they HAVE internet, technically, but it's so limited that they NEVER use it. And their internet becomes unlimited but ONLY from midnight to like 5am. I don't understand their internet. Why have it if you can never use it? But apparently they're sooooooo far away from normal human civilization here that they can't get any major internet company. They can only get strange backwoods "cuntry" internet. It's annoying and frustrating and I don't understand it, but it is what it is. There's no internet here.
I could turn on the date on my phone to AT LEAST check Facebook or something, But for some reason my phones don't get any data or roaming or anything out here in outer Seminole. And that's not fair because LITERALLY everyone else in this house has a phone that gets data BUT me. So when it's a holiday or when we decide to spend the date here, I am completely cut off from technology and it is absolutely maddening.
Point of order, I am currently writing this piece on a generic Notepad app on my laptop with plans to inoventually cut and paste this somewhere. Probably my blog. I was going to watch the new Lucha Underground or a movie or two on my laptop but I forgot my headphones, the new ones I got for myself that were quickly menifest destinied by the women in my life. So I think my heaphones are at home with my wife's computer. So, again, yay.
My in-laws have cable but only the absolute basic cable. And I think it goes without saying that I can never ever ever ever EVER have control of the television. I would LOVE to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade with my kids, a rare family tradition that has somehow escaped the dark ages of my childhood and has carried on into my kids' lives. But I don't get to watch anything while I'm here. Right now they're watching The Land Before Time 9 or 14 or whatever the fuck this is. They made a shit ton of these movies. The first one was great. It's a work of art. It was lovingly made and the animation was incredible. But ut all the other endless sequels were just cheap direct to video cash-ins with rushed animation and horrible musical numbers and they just keep getting worse and worse the more movies they make. And they own EVERY SINGLE SEQUEL at this house and they seem to play them on a loop.
(I would look up how many Land Before Time movies they've made but they don't have internet at this goddamn house.)
Now, on the rare occasion when there's NOT a Land Before Time sequel they are usually watching some home renovation show on some home renovation cable network that I didn't know existed. I hate these shows. I hate them with a passion. There's just no entertainment value there. Every episode is just a bunch of white people dealing with their expensive house. It's the WHITE PRIVELIDGE NETWORK. I can't stand it.
This Thanksgiving is going to be a strange one. Usually it's just us, my family and my wife's family. Occasionally a family from my in-law's church or a family friend. But regardless, it's usually a small, tight knit affair with the same people. This year, however, my brother-in-law Duane is gone. He moved back to California with his wife Lauren and his son, Jaden. They moves away a few months ago and now we're all silently dealing with the realities of the holidays without them. I personally don't care that they're gone but I worry about my son. Maxwell was best friends with Jaden. They spend a lot of time together. A LOT! So I worry about a Thanksgiving without them. Without Jaden.
There's also a bunch of new blood being thrown into the machine. My niece Deinna's boyfriend Christian. His family will be joining us. I know nothing of his family besides the apparent fact that his family fucking hates him. And there's a possibility that my new adopted daughter Amber's ghetto sister and her ghetto boyfriend might be joining us, too. That's a lot of ghetto. Then there's Nanah and Papaw's new kids. My in-laws have always wanted to adopt, despite the facts that they're broke and Nanah is allllllllllways suffering thru severe physical pain. So the addition of two foster kids to the house, one of which is a verrrrry small newborn, throws a wrench in things. There's a lot of new variables this year.
But besides the various unknowns, it's still a typical Thanksgiving here. I'm all alone and I will continue to be alone save for some random angry yells from my wife. Deinna and Emerald will be locked up in Dee's room. Natasha will be cooking and cleaning and arguing and helping and a million other things. She becomes a Tasha-nado and doesn't really have tme for me whenever she's here. I understand. Or I try to. Bela still gravitates towards the young children in the house, which is really sweet. She's growing, though, and developing quite an attitude to go with the growth. I worry how long she'll remain young, you know? Randal, the remaining brother-in-law, will be scretly drinking and loudly bitching about everything. He's an angry bitch and his attitude will be dragging everyone down. Oh, and he'll be shirtless most of the day. Nanah and Papaw will be stressing the fuck out and I will actively try to avoid them. And Amber will be helping. She's a sweetie.
Now Ferngully 2 is on! What is up with this family and crappy sequels?
Deinna is here. She's a freshman at a local college who is off for the holidays. I remember when she used to be a young little girl with a crush on me. And now I'm just her silly dumb uncle that she humors. It's sad and a bit annoying, honestly.
Now it's the evening. Seven at night. It's dark and chilly outside and things have mellowed out. I'm trying to finish watching Lucha Underground. The holidays, post feast, are always about trying to convince myself that I'm not having an asthma attack, that I'm just full. It's a difficult game. I'm trying to regulate, though, and trying not to think about how horrible work is going to be tomorrow.
Ths Thanksgiving was nice, I guess. It was certainlt a lot quieter without Duane and Lauren. And Christian's family never showed up so it ended up a nice, quiet, intimate affair. Lucha Underground was good, as always.
I miss my family sometimes, my parents. They always loved Thanksgiving.
I should clarify ... they're not dead. I just don't really talk to them. It's a long story.
I wonder how fucking bad tomorrow will be for me.
Happy Thanksgiving, I guess.