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Another Thanksgiving Without a Gravy Trough

Another Thanksgiving is here and once again my mom has put the kibosh on my gravy trough proposal. Six years have passed since I incepted this bolt of brilliance, and for six straight years my mom has refused to become a part of history. It’s all “Oh, it’s not tradition,” and “No, that would be disgusting, Justin, stop asking for that.” She’s become a broken record when it comes to adapting progressive holiday measures. Mom, take this seriously, please—this isn’t just another request like Pranksgiving-Danksgiving from sixteen-year-old me who didn’t want to do anything except pull practical jokes and get high.

Come on, we’ve never been sticklers for tradition; you don’t see us inviting Native Americans to our table anymore, do you? We both know we haven’t eaten with our neighbors of Cherokee descent for years now. Looking back, I don’t think they were as mad about the property dispute with the fence or even us constantly snickering at their fitting choice in Jeep vehicle. Frankly, it was probably Uncle Kenny’s “trail of tears” quip at Mrs. Decoteau excusing herself after becoming overly emotional during Gremlins that one year that abruptly ended the custom of the Decoteaus attending our Thanksgiving dinner or speaking to us at all. Face it, Mom; all traditions eventually end, some over time and some fizzle out all at once in a storm of lost tempers, broken traditions, and inappropriate taunts over tragedies.

I apologize; I’m digressing away from my trough-centric argument. What it all boils down to is that the trough just makes the most sense. With it there will be no fancy china for clumsy children with shitty motor skills to break. There’s not going to be any fretting over place settings, futilely trying to inhibit the, yet inevitable, ongoing existence-of-global-warming debate between the college graduate with an environmental policy degree and an uncle with an Internet connection. There’s not even going to be any waiting for food to be passed around the table before you can take any, because once I stir up the tasty goodness with my sterilized canoe paddle we can all just start gorging hard and gorging fast. Simple is good and Thanksgiving doesn’t get any simpler than a turkey, a trough, and a good tarp.

No need to worry about logistics; I’ve got a trough guy and I’ll take care of everything. I’ll break out the banana bread pan to serve as a vegetarian, side trough for Cousin Marian and I’ll have the dinosaur cake pan ready as an emergency, backup trough in case Uncle Kenny shows up again with a weird cold sore—I’d imagine no one would want to eat down-trough from that.

Aside from Marian and Kenny, we’ll all be brought together through the power of the trough. The trough will abolish those grandparents who insist we indulge more and who don’t ask for consent to pile seconds onto our plate. Yet, the trough will also eradicate any potential shame-inducing “whoa, Justin” comments typically heard while I’m mixing my dinner into a tasty, gravy-based soup that I lap up to keep my throat optimally lubed for maximum consumption. It’s the togetherness of a family-trough experience plus the sophisticated wholesomeness of a trough-based conversation that equals one perfect Thanksgiving, a Thanksgiving that can be easily cleaned up in a few minutes by washing any mess into the street sewer with the garden hose.

Okay, fine, full disclosure, Mom; this isn’t about troughs. This was never about the cool comfort of chowing uninhibited by chairs, serving bowls, or portion sizes. This is about me never washing everyone’s dishes ever again. No more washing used silverware, plates, cups, or the invariably nasty casserole dish from Aunt Debbie’s abhorrently sticky disaster of marshmallow and squash goo that no one ever touches. No longer will Justin be singled out and coerced into scraping that culinary catastrophe into the garbage when all I want to do post-dinner is to retreat to the bathroom for a cathartic excavation.

I’m begging for troughs, Mom;  mostly because I don’t want a repeat of last year when I was alone washing dishes on a poop-tornado watch, hoping the storm wouldn’t touch down in a spot where maximum damage would be induced.  Spare me from that discomfort and let this be the year I’m finally thankful for a trough Thanksgiving.

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About Howard Gantz, Manager (11 Articles)
Howard Gantz, Manager of Long Awkward Pause here. My credentials include managing the super boy band 98 Back Sync and Ron Howard’s second cousin, Doogie Howard. My father is Richard Gantz, owner of the Gantz T-Shirt Factory.

47 Comments on Another Thanksgiving Without a Gravy Trough

  1. I really hope you get the trough of your dreams…

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  2. It would be funny if someone accidentally fell in the trough, and then just decided to sit in it, in a tryptophan coma…until Uncle Harold got pissed and started screaming…and everyone screams about how Thanksgiving is ruined again.

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  3. I endorse the trough. I mean, the ‘normal’ gravy container is usually called a ‘boat,’ so wtf is wrong with a trough? It would match my feed bag, and we could all bob for drumsticks in it. Total win!

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  4. While your mother has prevented the trough from becoming a tradition, your request for the trough Has. I think it’s brilliant. But it’s time to take it to the next level. You should consider working up some artwork and have it mounted on 12×24 display boards. Then way you can pitch this year’s table with your idea directly so your fantastic idea is no longer edited out of the conversation with the Thanksgiving participants by your mother. Genius must be heard!
    May I suggest one small tweak? Think about an edible trough. This way ALL washing would be eliminated from the event.

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    • I like putting this to the people; Thanksgiving’s an American tradition and we live in a democracy where the people have the ultimate say.

      An edible trough is an interesting proposal; I don’t know what could support that gravy weight though, any ideas?

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      • Deep fried, hollowed out cow carcass? Wait… wait… how about a Bacon Trough!? Use your metal trough as a mold. (We don’t really live in a Democracy… but I like Mob Rule at the Dinner Table.)

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  5. Brieuse Bernhard Piers-Gûdmönd // November 25, 2013 at 12:55 pm //

    I wish only that we lived in the USA so we could use the Thanksgiving Trough concept. Perhaps if we combine the trough concept for Christmas and New Year. That way we wouldn’t have to rinse it till January 2nd.

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  6. “Gorging hard and gorging fast.” Love it. Thanksgiving in a nutshell.

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  7. You can lead a horse to water (trough) but you can’t make it drink. You can lead your Mom to idea of a gravy trough but you can’t make her let it into the kitchen. Her house; her rules.

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    • Perhaps you’re right, but one of these days I’ll invest in a good tarp and my one bedroom apartment will host the whole family for a trough-heavy Thanksgiving done right!

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  8. Reblogged this on Ramblings From an Apathetic Adult Baby and commented:

    It’s a trough-less Thanksgiving again for Justin, but enjoy the first column from LAP’s Adult Baby Nation!

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  9. I hope you get your wish. If it were up to a vote, I bet you’d get it! What’s Thanksgiving without mountains of gravy? And, why not just swim in it th

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  10. Why not just swim in it then? (gravy, that is). My computer is not cooperating today.

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  11. Fine. But I’m not sitting next to the person who’s going to send food flying all over my cute dress.

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    • You may need to bring a personal tarp if you want to be in the “Splash Zone” of the trough. Either that or I could fashion a gorgeous garbage bag poncho!

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  12. Oh justin – I’m from canada and we had our trough-less, First-Nations people-less Thanksgiving six weeks ago . I fed 19 here and bitched that not enough of them helped with dishes. I’m going trough for Christmas.

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    • Good work, it’s the propaganda behind plates that keeps us from enjoying a nice trough and cleaning with ease. And, like the proverb goes, a trough Christmas is a Merry Christmas!

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  13. Would you have a kid’s trough? I’m still against a kid’s table, but I’m in favor of a kids trough.

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    • We could have a kids’ trough, because kids are weird heights and sometimes smell awful. However, I think I would have to cap it at four troughs (primary, kids’, vegetarian, cold sore); we’re nearing plate territory if we have too many!

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  14. Happy TroughGiving Justin.

    “Trail of Tears” HAHAHAHAHA….

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  15. Sorry for being dense, is this a trough for gravy only or for all the food? My son had a somewhat similar idea, except his involved a carousel of food.

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    • Food carousel sounds fantastic as well! I’m thinking that the trough is going to be mostly food, but with enough gravy that it’s no where close to being solid.

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  16. Joseph Boshoff // November 27, 2013 at 9:41 am //

    Don’t live in america, so don’t celebrate thanksgiving. But damn, this idea could work for so many things….

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  17. Man, your Mom just likes to keep you down, doesn’t she? I’m surprised she doesn’t just slap you across the face and shame you in front of the whole family. The trough idea is brilliant yet she refuses to admit that it is brilliant. I’m amazed that your turned out so normal after having to put up with all those dream crushing comments from your Mom. If I ever get invited to your parents’ house, I’ll give your mom a piece of my mind. Which brings up the issue of the Restraining Order….do you think you could get that lifted? I would love to make it to your home for the Christmas Eve celebrations…..

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    • I’ll see what I can do for Christmas Eve; I’ll need everyone pulling together and all the help I can get to turn that Jesus’ pre-birthday celebration into a trough-centric affair.

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  18. Laughing. I support the trough as well. Doing the dishes falls on me. Can totally relate to scraping Goo…Eww!

    And go Lions! Are you in the D area?

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    • It’s a rough job scraping goo; and, yes, I’m originally from the Detroit area but now I’m around Lansing. Good to see the Wings logo, I’m assuming your from somewhere around or close to Wayne county too?

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  19. Hilarious and gross. I loved it!!!

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  20. Let me clarify. I loved your post… I’ve never had my own gravy trough, so I wasn’t saying “I loved the gravy trough!”

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  21. Looking forward to the day that you host the Trough Thanksgiving at your own house! Then you can use your own rules, and if your mother doesn’t like the trough, tough turkey!

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    • The apartment Thanksgiving could be a perfect excuse to begin a new era of Thanksgiving trough-tacular meals! Hopefully soon, until then I’ll just have to dream.

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