Today’s Thanksgiving bears little resemblance to the first such feast celebrated nearly 400 years ago, in Plymouth, Massachusetts. As every American schoolchild knows, the Puritans gave thanks for their deliverance from want with their new Native American allies, the Wampanoag people, who kicked up the repast a notch by bringing slain deer to the feast. The Wampanoag people also gave Massachusetts its name, meaning “by the range of hills” — these are all the states with a Native American name.
The Wampanoag people set an example for what guests should do when they are invited to a Thanksgiving meal. That’s worth noting because with turkey day approaching, 24/7 Tempo has compiled a list of big mistakes Thanksgiving guests often make. We created our list using material from sources such as Food & Wine magazine as well as resources such as history.com.
For at least one day of the year, Thanksgiving, we are all gourmands. It’s impossible to resist the splendid assortment of mashed potatoes, asparagus, cranberry sauce, stuffing, candied yams, green bean casserole, roasted Brussels sprouts, and of course, turkey. The main course is followed by a parade of pies and cakes, all washed down with copious amounts of soft drinks, wine and beer.
Enjoying the eating and drinking and revelry does not excuse guests from boorish behavior, be it overindulging in food, crossing swords with others over testy topics in conversation, or spending too much time on a cell phone. Good manners should not take a holiday. It’s important for guests to be considerate of the needs of the hosts, and offer to support or help them with the meal, which the hosts have been planning for weeks. Here are 30 ways you should start planning your Thanksgiving right now.