Wednesday, November 22


Growing up in the US, I always loved Thanksgiving.

I loved the parade in Manhattan, and the whole abundant autumnal harvest theme. I loved that there was no school and that my Dad would bring a huge turkey (dead, thank G-d) home from work. I still think that it was so nice for the fortune 500 company that my dad worked for to make sure that its kosher employees got kosher chickens even thought they cost thirty times as much.

I loved the entire build up to Thanksgiving, and that is one of the things I miss about being away from the USA.
Therefore, because I am Chutz LeAretz, I keep TWO days of Thanksgiving.
We have turkey shnitzels on Thursday night and then I have all my in-laws over on Friday night for a big festive feast on Isru Chag.
I serve a huge stuffed Turkey (which for some odd reason I feel compelled to name every year. Bezras Hashem, this year we will be serving Bertha) and sweet potatoes, and other harvest type foods. I always make two desserts, one being pumpkin pie and the other something chocolaty because no one besides me eats the pumpkin pie. But one must eat the pumpkin pie, it’s like eating tzimus on Rosh Hashana:
it is tradition. I can be as stuffed as Bertha, and yet I will make sure to shovel some pumpkin pie into my mouth. (Hey, is that why they call it pie-hole?)

Here’s a rendition of Thanksgiving past:
Must……. pumpkin….pie….

It’s not only the food that attracts me to this holiday.
I just love the idea that an entire country pauses to show Hakaras Hatov to a higher power.
I firmly believe that it is the concept of Hakaras Hatov that makes us better Ovdei Hashem and makes us into better people.

Besides that, I can’t really deal with atheists.
I can’t manipulate them at all.
When you can’t ‘put the fear of G-d’ in someone they will not respond well to guilt.
Why should they? All they have to look forward to is worms.

Every year at some point during the Friday night Thanksgiving meal I try to get my assorted in-laws to hold hands and say what they are thankful for.
Every year I get the same response.
Or should I say non response.
Or should I say ignored completely.
Never mind, it just means my food’s good.

So, in honour of this auspicious holiday (but it’s not really a holy-day is it?) I have decided to recount to you, my friends, my readers, my captive audience (I’ll take the handcuffs off when you finish) exactly, what I, Kasamba, am thankful for.

10 Obvious Things I am grateful for:
1- I am grateful for my husband and kids
2- I am grateful for my parents and in-laws
3- I am grateful for my wonderful supportive friends, family and neighbours
4- I am grateful for good health (for all above)
5- I am grateful for Shalom Bayis
6- I am grateful for my spirituality
7- I am grateful to have Parnassah
8- I am grateful for my talent
9- I am grateful for the ability to help others
10- I am grateful Israel is in our hands

10 Not So Obvious Things I am Grateful For:
1- I am grateful that I don’t live in _________ (fill in blank for any eastern European country, North African country, and any Moslem ruled country)
2- I am grateful that fundraising dinners end.
3- I am grateful for the washing instruction tags on my clothes.
4- I am grateful for indoor plumbing.
5- I am really grateful for Sushi
6- I am grateful for doorknobs
7- I am grateful for my Bentching pen
8- I am grateful for Pepto Bismol
9- I am grateful that the ozone has not fallen down on me
10- I am grateful that there are rarely snow off-school days in England

Well, there are so many more things I could list, like the fact that Bertha is giving up her life for our enjoyment. But because I am a believer, I really do think that Bertha's Turkey soul will rise higher because she was part of our Shabbos/Thanksgiving meal. And if she was a gilgul, then I’m sure she would have had her Tikun. (That’s why I always make sure to offer mechilah to any food that was once alive and kicking)

But there is sooooo much to be appreciative to Hakodosh Boruchu so this is me reflecting and saying Thank You to Him and to YOU as well, my lovely, fabiola, marvelosa readers.

Okay, you can go now.


At 3:48 PM, Blogger Limey2001 said...

i'm greatful for "slice" and "the white house"

At 3:59 PM, Blogger cruisin-mom said...

You're amazing...sooooo funny!

At 4:21 PM, Blogger Pragmatician said...

According to Lubavitch you wouldn' be required to keep two days:)

It seems you tend to forgot that English people are NOT Americans.
Holding hand at the table?That's soooo goyish.(kidding)

bon apetit

At 4:43 PM, Blogger tafka PP said...

Only now that you've told the world that you offer Mechila to your food I know I can eat at your house. What a relief!

ROFLMAO!!! Happy Bertha Thanksgiving to you all. The JBloggers are Thankful for you!

At 5:29 PM, Blogger socialworker/frustrated mom said...

Happy Thanks Giving! Give regards to Bertha for me lol.

At 7:07 PM, Blogger Amishav said...

Hey, I think that most people do celebrate Thanksgiving for two days, there's too much food not to! But being outside of the US you HAVE to celebrate it for two days. We call that, "Revenge of the Colonists!" Have fun Kasamba!

At 8:11 PM, Blogger Limey2001 said...

You know when th e pilgrims landed at plymouth they were......English and claimed what is now Massachusets for ..... King James...... of England
What are we celebrating here exactly?

At 9:31 PM, Blogger Scraps said...

Happy Turkey Day to you, too! Don't let the Brits get you down, they're just still annoyed we won the war for independance. :-P

At 12:26 AM, Blogger ~ Sarah ~ said...

happy thanksgiving all round! (even though we don't have it here.)
it's a nice thing, a day to be thankful for everything. i just find some of the traditional foods odd but then I didn't grow up with that tradition.

At 1:45 AM, Blogger Shopaholic said...

i just love the day off! and this year my office is closed on fri too! yay!! i'm gonna attempt to bake (since i've never done that before....) and make chicken soup!!
Hope your thanksgiving dinner comes out delicious and Bertha behaves herself whilst she is in the oven... save me some pumpkin pie- i would love to try it and Karl wants a piece of that chocolate cake...yummy!

Have a happy one!

At 2:25 AM, Blogger Chasidishe Shaigitz said...

LOL Happy thanksgiving, so much to be grateful for, I for one am grateful for your blog :) Enjoy Bertha Hehehe.

A lady was picking through the frozen turkeys at the grocery store, but couldn't find one big enough for her family. She asked the stock boy, "Do these turkeys get any bigger?" The stock boy answered, "No ma'am, they're dead."

At 5:42 AM, Blogger RaggedyMom said...

Great essay, as always - you're so witty!
What's the bentching pen? Where'd you get it? Are you for real about the mechila? Enjoy the day!
Chag Sa-Gobble-meach, as we say around here!

At 6:39 AM, Blogger torontopearl said...

Have a good Shabbos and a good Bertha!

At 1:56 PM, Blogger Nemo said...

Is there a Thanksgiving Sheini where one can get a second chance at eating turkey? You see, I'm far away in distant Australia and the only meat I managed to eat today was beef. Is there any repentance for the inadvertent sinner like myself?

At 2:48 PM, Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

We named our thanksgiving Sabra Turkey "Gertrude" for many years. (Gerturde the first, Gertrude the second...etc.) till it just became too much of a hassle for Thanksgiving on Thursdays. We
ve had Thanksgivings pushed forward to the following week (sometimes even two weeks).

Tonight, we're celebrating by going to a Moroccan wedding in Rosh HaAyin. I doubt anyone there will have heard of thanksgiving besides us...

(And be thankful you aren't Canadian -- thanksgiving there is a Christian holiday, and most Jews don't celebrate it, like they do in the USA)

At 5:40 PM, Blogger pint-sized said...

Funny blog, I too am appreciative of door knobs, my room doesn't have one and I have mastered the art of edging my hands under the door and pulling:) It's a treat to get to the kitchen door which I have indulged in enough to buy a door knob.
And as a vegetarian, I feel it is my duty to say: Bertha was a great turkey. She lived a full life, and now G-d has taken her back. We will all miss you, Bertha.

At 6:20 PM, Blogger Tzvi Meir said...

I miss thanksgiving....

At 9:08 PM, Blogger Lvnsm27 said...

happy thanksgiving

At 9:36 PM, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

Happy Thanksgiving

At 10:41 PM, Blogger Mia said...

love your "not obvious grateful-list"! Happy Thanksgiving!!

At 2:53 AM, Blogger workingema said...

whew! (rubbing arms) that was long enough- my arms fell asleep!
and y'know... I wanted to show thanks to certain relatives of mine living near me, and I went out, in the freezing cold, pouring rain, with the kids, and a plate of hot, fresh cookies..... and no one was home....
So, I guess I'll just show thanks tomorrow....

At 4:57 AM, Blogger Lakewood Venter said...

Happy Thanksgiving O' grateful one!

At 9:22 AM, Blogger Bonnie B said...

Happy Thanksgiving! May Bertha not give you a reason to be thankful for Pepto Bismol

At 2:34 PM, Blogger David_on_the_Lake said...

kinda hard to type with these handcuffs on..

Beautiful post...makes me quite nostalgic for Thanksgiving...wait a second...I'm the one here and ur the one there..hmmm

You sure captured the spirit of thanks giving..
and I thank you for that...and sharing it

At 7:55 PM, Blogger chaverah said...

lol, great post. However so much controversy with celebrating thanksgiving. what i am thankful for?
reading blogs like yours to brighten up my day. thanks!

At 8:24 PM, Blogger Maven said...

"bertha" is one of my favorite grateful dead tunes.

At 11:30 AM, Blogger RR said...

Thank you, dear Kasamba, for paying homage to the oft-forgotten and unappreciated doorknob.

Mmm...pumpkin pie....

At 6:28 PM, Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Qassamba: You should be thankful the frummie police doesn't go after your blog for admitting to eating Turkey on thanksgiving (which everyone knows is totally and utterly assur!)

[unless you eat with a shinuy, and the stuffing is outside the turkey]

At 9:05 PM, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

Happy Thanksgiving.

At 3:32 AM, Blogger Okee said...

thanksgiving was fun and all -I could really get used to the whole "no-school-sleep-late" thing, but I kept driving around looking for places to get my errands done in (cause i can't get anything done stuck in school from dawn till dusk) and everything was closed! I drove around for half-an-hour looking for frozen yogurt to precede my turkey meal, and not one place was open! A travesty of a holiday! If it's not a yom tov and driving is allowed and you're supposed to be celebrating, all stores should be open all day so you can really celebrate!! With frozen yogurt!! And stamps!!!

And then she stops, gathers her breath and things, and departs...

At 9:17 AM, Blogger BagelUndertheCouch said...

poor bertha. she hadn't even begun to truly live until she got put in your oven.

At 5:32 PM, Blogger fluffykneidle said...


At 11:22 PM, Blogger pint-sized said...

Fluffykneidle!!!!Where have you been????Since London, I haven't had a single conversation with you!! And before that, not since Manchester!! If you're back on the blog scene, check me out, and please start writing again, you're cracking(yes, my new favourite grandpa word:) )

At 12:21 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

good to know!


I pick and choose Minhagim!

Thank you sooo much!
(I knew you were worried!)

Hope yours was good!

LOL! Too true!

We are celbrating the freedom to clebrate whatever we want!

I think you're right!

The food is YUM!

Hope you had a great one!

Chassidishe Shaigetz:
You are so sweet!!
Love the joke!

A bentching pen is a pen that has the entire bentching on a scroll that rolls out of its side!


You are invited for Thanksgiving sheni( its in January)

I hope Gertrude was yummy!

Doorknobs are great!
Bertha keeps repeating on me.

I know...

You too!

You too!

Thank you!

Hmmm... I hope you went back later!

Lakewood venter:
You too!

Too funny!

Thank you for that!

Wow, thanks!

How appropriate!

Doorknobs rock!

I'm in disguise...

Jacks Sahck:
Once again, thanks!

You should petition the government!

She was so young..

How come you didn't speak to Pintsized yet????

At 1:09 PM, Blogger Sara with NO H said...

Sorry so late here!

"I can’t really deal with atheists.
I can’t manipulate them at all."

Of everything you wrote that line takes cake, or, uh the pie. Pumpkin pie that is...

At 3:16 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

Sara with no H:
I'm glad you noticed it!!!!

At 5:35 PM, Blogger fluffykneidle said...

ok will someone tell me who pint sized is? im awfully confused she seems to know me and for the life of me i cant remember ever having even seen her blog before!
kasamba you make me smile
anyway merry chanuka all round

At 5:52 PM, Blogger fluffykneidle said...

ok no worries i have discovered that pint sized is not a wierdo stalker in fact she is a very dear old friend. (i am not wierd either.)

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