By: Lucy Panicacci
Congratulations! The Panicacci family selected you for a spot at their spectacular Thanksgiving dinner table. Get ready for a magnificent time! This invitation comes with a night of fun, wonder, journey, and even tragedy. If you want to make it out unscathed — without the horrifying memories of an extremely lifeless discussion or a vicious argument — here is a guide to everything you need to know.
If you find yourself overwhelmed, here are a few essential tips to give you a break. Just a simple smile and nod could get you through the whole night. Any mention of sports teams will grant you at least a few minutes. You could also resort to devouring some of the fine cuisine available — sweet potatoes with marshmallows, cranberry sauce (if you are a freak), and some stuffing.
However, whatever you do, do not speak of NFTs, the metaverse, or cryptocurrency. The mention of these topics will prompt a painful discussion; you will come out knowing less than you did when the conversation started. Any utterance and my cousins will bombard you with the Mark Zuckerburg agenda, saying, “the metaverse is the future” and “invest in Ethereum.” They will force you to imagine a society where you live in a VR headset and view NFT art galleries. Do not let them tempt your curiosity. Trust me when I say this: you didn’t understand NFTs before, and you won’t after.
Any English literature is off limits if you want to play it safe. Unless you want an in-depth discussion about a book you have never read, keep your mouth shut. Last Thanksgiving, The Great Gatsby, which I, unfortunately, had never read, was the book of the night. With nothing to say on the matter, I sat silently and picked away at my food while my English teacher aunt analyzed away.
Of course, Thanksgiving forbids most politics. I will keep it brief for political advice: do not mention Jordan Peterson, whether you know who that is or whether you do not. It’s for your own good.
Lastly, be mindful of our seniors at the table and do not talk about college applications. Even though the simple question, “Where do you want to go?” might prompt a seemingly casual conversation, you should consider their mental health. Though their response might be polite, it forces the senior to relive the hundreds of college acceptance YouTube videos they have watched, in which the creator who has a 5.0 GPA and was the president of six different clubs says, “Grades aren’t everything!” Don’t remind them that at the same college they are applying to, there are hundreds of people who are better than them. Let’s keep it upbeat!