Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Way Back WhensDay: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Good grief, he can cook
By Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter

I blog a lot about Halloween and Christmas, but not really about Thanksgiving.  So I decided to change that with the next couple of Way Back WhensDay blogs.  The first goes back to the year I was born (1973) and the first airing of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.

When I was a kid, we would always go to my grandparents' house for Thanksgiving.  Cousins, aunts, uncles, and great-grandparents would gather around large tables in the basement and share a home cooked meal.  It was tradition.  But as we all got older, and the kids went off to college, got engaged, and eventually married, tradition started changing.  Now, family members are scattered around the country, and some years we improvise the celebration.

But there has been a constant in my 40 years on this planet, and that's the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving special.  I've watched the 30 minute classic every year for as long as I can remember.  As an adult, it takes me back to my childhood, being carefree and knowing that we'd have a couple of days off from school.  Back then, that was a big deal.  Everything seemed so right with the world.

Dinner is served...
I still get a kick out of how bossy Peppermint Patty is and how much of a pushover Charlie Brown is when it comes to dealing with her and Lucy.  Charlie Brown becomes the reluctant host of a Thanksgiving meal, that only a boy and his pet beagle could come up with.  If you recall, the menu for the day included toast, pretzel sticks, popcorn, and jellybeans.  The gang dines on a ping pong table with mismatched chairs.  It's not exactly what the Indians shared with the Pilgrims, but the point is that Charlie Brown opened his home and his heart to his friends when they needed somewhere to go.  Eventually, the Peanuts gang heads over to Charlie Brown's grandmother's house (or condo) for a more traditional dinner.

That leaves Snoopy and Woodstock alone and of course ready to cook their own meal.  The duo comes up with a feast worthy of the first Thanksgiving, including turkey, the trimmings, and some pumpkin pie.  So time and distance may get in the way of celebrating with everyone in the family each year, but this special cartoon is a Thanksgiving tradition in our house.  They just don't make cartoons like that anymore.

No comments:

Post a Comment