Yes, there was a Fourth Thanksgiving. I have the documents. (More)

We’ve discussed the myths of the First Thanksgiving and I’ve reported on the Second Thanksgiving as handed down by Squirrels, and the Third Thanksgiving from the diary of Elizabeth Arden Standish.

Her parents called her Liz, and her older brothers called her Lizard. Some things never change. Anyway, Liz’s diary was found just last year, when someone in Plymouth was cleaning out their attic. They put it up for sale on EBay and I snapped it up for … well, let’s not say what I spent. Liz kept her diary in crayon, but she drew the Thanksgiving Day hand-turkey in colored markers. She wrote “Yes, this is all real” on the last page, so I’m sure it’s authentic.

And Liz was quite the diarist. Here’s her entry for Thanksgiving Day, 1624:

Dear Diary,

I didn’t even want to do Thanksgiving this year. Last year it was all cooking and washing dishes and warming up leftovers and washing dishes again, while Grandpa and Uncle Harry and Dad and my brothers napped next to the window, where the town crier was yelling out the stupid football game.

The next day Mom took me to Ye Olde Generale Store for the You Can Tickle Me But I Won’t Laugh Coz I’m A Pilgrim doll, and they only had one left. Some other woman tried to grab it from Mom’s hands and, well, Mom and that woman had words. Lots of words. Mostly short words that Mom said I could never tell Dad about, ever. It was cold the day after that so there was plenty of ice and Mom said that made her lip feel better.

I didn’t get to open the You Can Tickle Me But I Won’t Laugh Coz I’m A Pilgrim doll til Christmas. What a crock! It was a lot smaller than it sounded when the town crier yelled about it, and the buckle broke off its hat when one of my older brothers tried to grab it away. Mom sewed it back on though, so that was cool.

So after all that, I really didn’t want to do Thanksgiving this year. But the mayor’s press secretary made all the town criers say what they were thankful for before they could ask questions, and Dad said we’re supposed to be thankful too … which meant Mom and Grandma and I spent all day cooking all that stuff again.

Aunt Edith made Jello salad this year. Lemme just say … uhh … no, I’ll be thankful. Thankful I didn’t eat it. Mom tried it and she made the same face as this summer when she tried that leftover milk from the morning before. Then she put on a smile that looked as if she’d chiseled it out of the town rock and said: “So nice, Edith.”

My brothers enrolled at Dad’s school this year and they’re both on the football team, the Miles Standish Preparatory School Lions (coz the British royal crest). So at least Grandpa and Uncle Harry and Dad didn’t sit around and nap. They went to watch the Lions play the Plymouth High Cowboys (coz they came over on the Anne, with the cows).

Mom thought the town crier was going to get attacked by his heart, or maybe attack it. Either way, he was yelling so loud and mom said the color commentator is gonna sound like a horse for the next week.

I suppose I should tell you all about the stupid game, since my brothers were playing, but I really hate football. One of my brothers is defensive and the other one is totally offensive. On the football team too.

My defensive brother almost lost the game because of unnecessary roughness. I could have told them. Just ask my You Can Tickle Me But I Won’t Laugh Coz I’m A Pilgrim doll. Just sayin’.

But my totally offensive brother got the runs on one of those Critical Third Down Situations that happen every five minutes. Anyway, when my totally offensive brother got the runs on that third down, the town crier kept saying it was “Unbelievable!” I guess he’s never eaten Aunt Edith’s Jello salad. It gave everyone the runs.

My totally offensive brother also made an extra point, the color commentator said, but I don’t believe it. He’s never made a point worth listening to, let alone an extra one.

So they all came back and we said what we were thankful for and I said I was thankful the food wasn’t too cold. Grandpa didn’t take the hint. On and on and on. If I’m ever God, I’m gonna make a rule: don’t let the food spoil while you’re thanking me for it. It kinda defeats the point.

Then Uncle Harry was on and on about draining some swamp. There are marshes out on the Cape and they grow cranberries there, so I asked why he hated cranberry sauce, but Mom said he meant an allegorical swamp. But there are no alligators up here.

Anyway, dinner was fine and maybe tomorrow mom will take me to Ye Olde Generale Store again. The town crier has been on and on about the It’s-Not-Easy-Coz-We’re-Pilgrims-Bake Oven and it sounds really cool.

Nite Nite, Diary.

So there you have it … the Fourth Thanksgiving, as told by someone who was there.

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Image Credit – Drawing: Huffington Post; Text: Crissie Brown (BPICampus.com)

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Good day and good nuts