A Holiday Recipe


By Neil Offen

A classic Thanksgiving dish, updated for these perilous, angry times (heartburn included).


8 guests (3 Democratic Socialists, 2 Trumpers, 1 anti-vaxxer, 1 Bernie Bro and 1 lonely NFL fan)

50 years of family squabbles, still stewing and added to the pot

1 gallon of raw anger

1/2 gallon of steaming rage

1 pint of unadulterated guilt

2 quarts of mild frustration

6 cups of exasperation

4 cups of free-range fury

2 pints of low-fat antagonism

3 pounds of constant complaining

1 pound of blame

2 broken promises

4 ounces of milk, spilled

2 ounces of crying, over spilled milk

3 tablespoons of minced irritation, convertible to half a cup of spite

2 teaspoons of annoyance extract

½ teaspoon of bad timing

¼ teaspoon of touchiness

A sprinkle of irritation

A dash of accusation

A hint of reproach

A splash of annoyance

A pinch of reality

A dusting of growing dissatisfaction


2 quarts of high-octane disagreements (These can be found at your local Twitter or Facebook, but remember that long-simmering arguments are always more flavorful and cut more deeply)

1 pound of cure (you are likely to need more, particularly if you have forgotten the ounce of prevention)


Pre-heat dining room to the boiling point, although everyone is hot already.

Mix table settings, putting Aunt Evelyn on the left of Uncle Charlie, who is alt-right. Cousin JJ should not be near brother Pfizer, because she’s Biden her time and he’s AOC OK.  Let Mitch Mc sit by himself because no one, on either side of the table, masks their dislike of him very much anymore.

Discuss football (but not Colin Kaepernick), the weather (but not climate change), music (but not Springsteen or Ted Nugent) and your health (but not the Affordable Care Act or expanding Medicaid) for as long as you can.

Everything can be prepared in advance and stored deep in the soul up to this point, but will likely need a boost after six months or so when you critically race to clean up a mess in the kitchen.

Combine all the remaining ingredients in a large zipper top bag, forcing the air out, and shake forcefully until everyone has become agitated. Sprinkle with Ivermectin.

Make sure the smoke alarms are working.

Serves no one.

Carrboro resident Neil Offen has written humor pieces for a number of different publications, in a number of different countries. His column appears twice monthly in The Local Reporter.

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