Downtown San Diego's homeless dream of Thanksgiving away from sidewalks
The drive in from Pine Valley, potluck meals, misgivings increase, hipster holiday, importance of humility, local food for the feast, turkey cooked in brown bag, in 2005 we had 250 guests
Stormy: "I have no family. I only got an 18-year-old boy in Modesto -- which I'm tryin' to get back there."
- On a warm autumn afternoon, a homeless man lies against a wall on First Avenue just south of Ash Street. He's sharing a bottle of cheap vodka with an older homeless man in a wheelchair. They're both drunk. With Thanksgiving coming soon, what plans do these men have? The older man, Troy Bullock from Lubbock, Texas, talks first.
- By Robert Kumpel, Nov. 22, 2000
My grandfather walked out into the middle of Crown Point Drive and lay down
- Last Saturday, I drove my kids to visit my parents, to the same house where I visited my grandparents when I was a child. South from San Marcos, we sped along Interstate 15. In the far back seat, six-year-old Rebecca and four-year-old Angela bickered over who got to sing. “Mom,” Rebecca complained, “I was singing a song, and Angela just interrupted me.”
- By Anne Albright, Nov. 24, 1999
I brought the green bean casserole. This is a disgusting dish, in a way, dependent as it is on canned mushroom soup, but I have always liked it because it reminds me of the Eisenhower years.
- Big-hearted people often host Thanksgiving dinners for what my friend Hazel calls “waifs-and-strays.” Many of these meals are potluck; the drill is that your hostess, who provides turkey, dressing, and gravy, farms out the rest of the meal to guests. She recommends categories of dishes you can bring — hors d’oeuvres, vegetable, salad, dessert, bread, and booze. You know which men (for it’s most often men who do this) are hopeless in the kitchen: they bring booze.
- By Judith Moore, Nov. 26, 1997
By the time I’d managed three or four Thanksgivings, nothing about the dinner caused me worry except the giblet gravy.
- I remember, in my first years as a housewife, getting up out of a warm bed while my husband and children slept. I pulled on my old blue chenille bathrobe over my flannel nightie and tiptoed across cold floors into the kitchen. After tossing the dachshund out the back door, I wrested the 25-, 30-pound thawed turkey out of the refrigerator.
- By Judith Moore, Nov. 25, 1993
I am in the vanguard of the mutiny to cancel the family Thanksgiving.
- If a guest was more than 15 minutes overdue, there was much worrying, followed by frenetic phone calls. "We're ready to start eating," came the anxious missive from the great-aunt standing nearest the stove. "You're holding everyone up," my grandmother always added, causing latecomers to drive 90 miles an hour.
- By Sue Garson, Nov. 19, 1981
- As I’ve pointed out before, no holiday lacks the potential for a hipster makeover. Thanksgiving is no exception. Not only is it nestled comfortably between epic Halloween costumes and ugly-Christmas-sweater parties, November’s fourth Thursday corners the market on ritualized overeating. Lest we forget, hipsters as a whole have embraced gluttonous foods. Who was it that first incorporated bacon into donuts and cupcakes? Hipsters.
- By DJ Stevens, Nov. 18, 2015
- To be thankful for anything much at all requires humility, I believe. I have little enough of it; in fact, I have a dichotomy common to alcoholics, and that is a combination of both arrogance and self-loathing. Hardly conducive to genuine humility. Another subject almost certainly.
- By John Brizzolara, Nov. 25, 2009
- It’s late October and I am looking for a turkey, which is ironic. A decade ago, when I was a SWF, all I could find were turkeys.... Stan Glen, supervisor for Siesel’s Meats, laughs when I phone him to ask if I can order a local, raised-in-San Diego turkey for Thanksgiving. “You’re about 40 years too late.”
- By Pamela Hunt-Cloyd, Nov. 25, 2009
COVER PHOTO/ART DIRECTION BY KIRSTEN SORTON; TATTOO BY DAVIDE
- A few months ago, my gardener (unaware of my ancestry) casually said, “Mexico City has too many Jews.” “What’s wrong with Jews?” I asked. “They’re all rich and stingy.” I thought of my grandparents.
- By Naomi Wise, Nov. 25, 2009
- The biggest Grimm Thanksgiving on record was in 2005, when about 250 people showed up at my sister Margaret’s new house. Most of them were directly descended from my parents Bill and Irene Grimm. By that time, they had 15 living children plus their spouses, and they were nearing 120 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.
- By Ernie Grimm, Nov. 25, 2009
- “How sharper than a serpent’s tooth it is, to have a thankless child.” — King Lear
- Perhaps Shakespeare should have rendered that bit about the serpent as “How common as a horse’s hoof” or some such. Children, in my experience, are not naturally grateful. They regard whatever blessings they receive as the normal course of events.
- By Matthew Lickona, Nov. 25, 2009