Will there be Canned Cranberry, or Should I Bring My Own?


The Thanksgiving Sandwich 

I know that the Thanksgiving day meal gets all of the hype but come this time of year I start to crave one thing.  The Thanksgiving sandwich.  Either that night or the next day, cramming as many leftovers that you can fit between two slices of bread is the way I like to usher in the Holiday Season.

I am taking a break this year as I have been the CEO of the bird for the last 6 or so years.  Cooking the turkey can be one of those manly culinary exhibitions like making a pot of chili or grilling.  Last year I put a turkey on a giant Foster’s beer can and cooked it on an open flame just like baby Jesus intended man to cook.  But this year I am taking it easy.  So, since I don’t have to worry about targeting that 12 hour window far enough before Thursday that the store still has fresh sage but not too soon that it goes bad, I thought I would offer a couple of Turkey day tips.

1.Small servings.  I don’t mean, limit your intake all together but don’t fill up on the first pass.  There will be aunts people there that will measure their happiness and possibly some portion of their self-worth on who goes back for seconds on their dish.  So be a hero and start small and make several trips.  It isn’t like the extra walking is going to hurt.  Speaking of needing exercise, if you are a dude that could stand to drop a few lbs, this is even more important for you.  No reason for someone to feel like a failure because the fat guy didn’t even want seconds.

2. Get a can of cranberry.  It may not look too fancy jiggling there with its can lines wrapping around it but nothing goes better on a thanksgiving sandwich than slices of canned cranberry.

3. The sympathy scoop.  Don’t let anyone take home a dish that was barely touched.  I don’t care if you are 90% sure you see hot dogs and marshmallows in there, get a spoon-full.  Leave it for last then spread it out on your plate so it looks like you ate it.  Remember, these are the people you love, or at least pretend to once a year on this day.

4. Keep it classy.  Wine should not be opened before the Turkey float goes by on the parade.  (exception: if any part of the menu is being cooked outdoors an open beer is the most important cooking utensil regardless of time of day)

5. Wardrobe selection. You don’t need to go over the top here and show up in a Biggest Loser sweat suit but at the same time think ahead enough that you at least pick those pants that you are still “growing into.”

Last of all, say “Thank You”  and have a great time because eating until your left leg starts to go numb is totally sweet.

*note: not to brag but that is a picture of a turkey I cooked. (actually, that was totally to brag)


Holiday Haters 

I spend 364 days a year waiting for Christmas.  I get how that may seem strange seeing as how I am not an 8-year-old kid and stuff but that is just the way it is.  I get excited when they start putting Christmas decorations next to the Halloween candy and enjoy the buildup as much as any part of the holiday.  I really enjoy this time of year and not getting the strange stares when I pull up to a red-light with my windows down and Christmas music playing.  That was kind of awkward in August.

I get that the holiday season brings tons of angst and stress and the hustle and bustle is a turn off.  That being said, enough with all of the vitriol about decorations going up too early.  You are the boss of your own decorations and Christmas cheer.  Have you heard the new Justin Bieber Thanksgiving CD?  I didn’t think so.

I understand that I am a bit off-kilter with my love of Christmas and all that the season brings, but you will have plenty of time to vent your frustrations once the holiday madness begins and someone takes your parking spot.  Save your punches for the ring killer.

Hating on Christmas is totally weak.


About Simon

I am a husband and a dad of two little girls. I am a lone Y chromosome and am already planning my escape strategy to deal with the estrogen flood that is on its way. People say there is a lot of joy to be found in the simple things and I have found they can provide a healthy dose of anti-awesome as well. I am, in general, a pretty optimistic guy and needed a bit of a creative outlet; so here it is. Thanks for stopping by. View all posts by Simon

35 responses to “Will there be Canned Cranberry, or Should I Bring My Own?

  • Jay

    I love the sympathy scoop, that should be must-read material for everybody.

  • bugsyx

    this was a great read – #3 i think it particularly important when it comes to any occasion that involves a gathering of people, i’ve had friends actually tell me they’re worried ‘nobody will like their food’ (i, for one, don’t mind – just means more for me!) #5 i apply to every occasion that involves a huge quantity of food (christmas, birthdays, sometimes a regular evening spent at home…)

  • joannesisco

    You are such a gentleman to be worrying about the feelings of others and ensuring every dish is properly sampled. May your Thanksgiving pleasures be many 🙂

  • ashleearias

    I love everything about this post! So many good points! And the humor is always appreciated.!

  • What I Read: Blogger Appreciation Award « By the (cook)Book

    […] Sweet and Weak: I love this blog because it’s funny and to the point. Simon is a husband and a father with great stories about family life that are so relatable for anybody with kids. And all of his not-about-family stories are just relatable to anybody! Favorite Post: Will There Be Canned Cranberry, or Should I Bring My Own […]

  • Clyde Manda

    I just added this feed to my bookmarks. I have to say, I very much enjoy reading your blogs. Thanks!

  • breezyk

    haha, I’ve been guilty of hating on Christmas I’m afraid… but this post made me so jealous of US Thanksgiving.. and that sandwhich looks delish- enjoy!

  • Jamie

    Best Holiday post I’ve read this year! OK…that said…on #4: Keep it Classy. We totally have a tradition of running a 5K on Thanksgiving morning with a group of friends…and following it up with Bloody Marys at my house….totally normal, right?! Sweet baby Jesus, laying in a manger…sweet little 7lb 6oz baby Jesus…would totally approve!

    Happy Thanksgiving…and Happy Almost Christmas time!

  • Joe

    Loved tips #3 & #4. I can’t imagine how I would feel if I brought a dish to a gathering and no one touched it. Well, actually I would because I can’t cook!

    #4 is a given. In fact, regardless if anything is cooked outside or not, a beer in hand is a must during family gatherings…mostly so you can drown out that annoying aunt or in-law OR gather up the courage to tell them how you really feel…then you can blame it on the alcohol.

  • moondogmama

    Last year my husband let me be in charge of Thanksgiving, and I made organic spinach macaroni and cheese instead of a Turkey. And when we said we were hosting again this year.. suddenly people weren’t willing to drive 15 minutes or 4 hours to get here until we decided to BRING BACK THE BIRD. If you need me, I will be in the corner with my vegetarian gluten free ambrosia salad. And a BIG bottle of wine.

  • MrsFatass

    Just when I think I can’t love this blog any more, you write about the Thanksgiving Sandwich. it is MY favorite part of this partiular holiday too. Canned cranberry and all. Sweet.

  • Week in Review – Thanks a lot, Non-Driver! | steadily skipping stones

    […] Will there be Canned Cranberry, or Should I Bring My Own? by Simon at sweetandweak (in which he offers up some Thanksgiving Day tips that will feed your need for funny) […]

  • Appetite 4 Life

    Once again, made me smile! Great post…I love Christmas…the atmosphere, the smells in the house, the mulled wine, the whispering, the hiding, the wrapping…the mistletoe…all of it!! Bring it on!

  • Barefoot Baroness

    Simon love all your tips but especially #3. You may be the first person ever to approach such a touchy topic, but one well deserving being touched upon. Thank you.

    PS I adore Cristmas too. I love all holidays but being raised by a woman with true Christmas Class it would be going against what is in my blood if I failed to do it up in her style.

  • belleofthecarnival

    Cranberry sauce and leftover stuffing are a necessity to the perfect turkey sandwich. You should always have more than enough 😉

  • Sylvia Smith

    Just checking – did you see the current Crate & Barrell catalog cover? Someone in the creative department deserves a bonus. It’s got the goods. Made me think of you!

  • icookbythebook

    Christmas haters ARE totally weak. I do have to say though that I love, love, love Nordstrom’s policy of not decorating for Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving- they say it’s best to enjoy holidays one at a time.
    I personally love every Holiday the falls between The First Day of School (nerdy… but I love it, even though I’m done with school) and New Year’s, so I do hate feeling rushed to put up the tree before I get around to baking-with-pumpkin-puree and polishing off the halloween candy.
    As soon as I get home from Black Friday Shopping (Black Friday is also a favorite holiday)… the tree will go up and I will listen to “Baby It’s Cold Outside” until Santa comes!

  • squirrel circus

    I think I’m going to need a firm ETA on the arrival of the turkey float. I’m definitely going to need something to help me “Remember, these are the people you love, or at least pretend to once a year on this day”!!

  • themiddlegeneration

    I love your tips on the Thanksgiving meal, etiquette and all. I totally agree that the best part are the turkey sandwiches. I have never tried cranberry sauce on them. Usually I make a mayo & ketchup sauce (aka Russian dressing) and slather that on.
    I’ve already said what I think about Christmas music on the radio 24/7 after Halloween. I love Christmas music during Christmas (that is the best part of the whole holiday) but if you enjoy singing along to it all year, that’s up to you. I will not be putting my decorations( which I love) up until well after Thanksgiving. Everything in good time.

  • SzaboInSlowMo

    I’m with you all the way down to those who suck the fun out of holidays before they even start. Don’t let the turkeys get you down, I say. And yes, I’ve had the pleasure of Bieber’s take on Christmas…not bad.

  • angrymiddleagewoman

    ” No reason for someone to feel like a failure because the fat guy didn’t even want seconds.”

    I LOVE that!!! And to heck with all these folks telling us how to ‘eat smart’ during the holidays. NOT on Thanksgiving by golly – I refuse! Enjoy that sandwich.

  • chlost

    I’m a bit of a curmudgeon on the mixing of Thanksgiving and Christmas. Let’s keep them separated….two holidays instead of one. But I respect your right to smash them together on the plate of your life….like the mashed potatoes and corn of a holiday dinner. I will just keep my holidays in those separated sections of the plate! 🙂
    The lines on the canned cranberries….the best!

  • Sylvia Smith

    We are kind of excited this year because our kitchen is done, our kittens are grown and on the 10th we are hosting Carol’s work Holiday Party. So, we start decorating tomorrow! And we both just got our approval to take the week after Christmas off, so we’ll for sure be heading your way (and then down to Winterhaven and St. Pete). Nothing like a road trip with Christmas music! I am totally with you re: the anticipation. Why rush it?!

  • sportsjim81

    Great tips for Thanksgiving. I’ll be sure to keep them in mind…and the cranberry can is the best food(?) ever invented. As far as Christmas goes…you’ve found a kindred spirit my friend. I revert back to an 8-year-old boy every year around this time. I feel bad for my kids, as I’m quite sure I overshadow them. But they’ll get over it.

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