The weather's turned. The sun sets early. Your neighbor is gathering her Christmas decorations. Yes, it's time for another Thanksgiving. Time to sift through your recipes, set your menu, shop for dinner, cook, eat, eat, eat, eat, and take a nap.
Oh, and one more thing. You have to make your guest list. Perhaps you spend every Thanksgiving with the same friends and family. Maybe it's new folks every year. Whatever your tradition, this is the year to try something new. Something so extraordinary that it defies the space-time continuum.
Invite these ballplayers to your Thanksgiving dinner. Do it. They will add flavor, texture and spice to your holiday. I promise.
Well, before we get to the dinner itself, you have to shop for the main course. For most of you, that means turkey. Maybe ham. (For me it means tofu or tempeh, but that's another story entirely.) So you'll want to pay a visit to the butcher. You can choose from Hank Butcher, John Butcher, Max Butcher or Mike Butcher. Your choice. Hank and Max are more old-school butcher types; John and Mike are more modern in their approach. Whichever butcher you choose, be sure to get your wishbone for the table. All the butchers get their wishbones from the same guy: Hank Boney. He pitches the same deal to all the butchers, so the price shouldn't vary.
The guest of honor at your Thanksgiving dinner should of course be Turkey Stearnes. He's no ordinary bird. No, Turkey Stearnes labored for years on the farm and wasn't allowed to play in the other fowls' games. (Bad birds!) But he was a great turkey, a star. And eventually his feathery friends recognized his accomplishments. Turkey Stearnes - You'd be proud to have him as the centerpiece of your Thanksgiving dinner.
If you follow Keith Law for his food tweets, you'll likely be making duck this Thanksgiving. Not sure if Keith is having prospects Kevin Duck or Duck Bonds at his house. You should go pro and have Ducky Detweiler or Ducky Holmes. If duck's not your thing, but you want another main dish to compliment Turkey Stearnes, include either Ham Allen or Ralph Ham. They're both versatile. But don't sit them next to Turkey Stearnes. That rivalry goes way, way back.
Good start. You have Turkey Stearnes at the head of the table on one end and either Ham Allen and Ralph Ham or Kevin Duck and Duck Bonds on the other. Next around the table? Why, Yam Yaryan and Candy Maldonado, of course. Now, remember, Candy and Yam must sit together. You cannot have Candy without Yam or Yam without Candy. Not if you want a successful Thanksgiving. The same for Hap Collard and the Greens: Shawn Green, Dallas Green and Pumpsie Green. You definitely want to keep Collard and the Greens together. You may also want to sit Pepper Martin and Salty Parker near Collard and the Greens. You know, Collard can be a bit bland sometimes.
If you're a Thanksgiving traditionalist -- you know, Pilgrims and Native Americans and all -- you will certainly want to include Willie Mays (nee Maize). Actually, however you celebrate Thanksgiving, you should include Willie Mays. Fascinating guy. Great storyteller. He can sit with Spud Chandler. They can reminisce about the heyday of New York baseball.
Wow. It's getting crowded around the table. That's okay. Damian Rolls doesn't sit still too long. Likes to move around the table a bit. Same with Frank Buttery. He usually follows Rolls around the room. Unless you're in California (like I am), in which case you'll invite (Olive) Oil Can Boyd and leave Frank Buttery off the guest list.
Don't worry, I haven't forgotten about the guests who like to show on the later end. Sweet guys, all of them. Yes, yes, Cookie Rojas should be there. But don't forget about Cookie Cuccurullo and Cookie Lavagetto. They can be a bit flaky, so don't get too concerned if they don't all show up. But the real action will go down when Seven Berry Pie shows up. What? You don't know about Seven Berry Pie? Oh, it's delicious: Charlie Berry, Claude Berry, Joe Berry, Ken Berry, Neil Berry, Sean Berry and Tom Berry all mixed together with Pie Traynor. Yum-my.