Friday, November 28, 2008

The mystery of Thanksgiving as explained by foreigners

Last night a yachtie friend from Sussex, England invited me to go to Waxy's Irish Pub, a popular watering hole frequented by the Euro crew. I enjoy listening to him say funny words in his thick British accent, like "bloke" and "mate" and "brilliant" and "bangers" (weird British entree) and "chippie (carpenter) and so on. Here we are, sipping our pints, when the following conversation took place. I'm lucky beer didn't shoot out of my nose from laughing so hard.

ENGLISH: It's dead here tonight.
ME: Yeah, because of Thanksgiving.
ENGLISH: Is it true that Thanksgiving is about thanking the slaves?
ME: What?
ENGLISH: Yeah, Jamie [the captain of the boat English works on] told me that Thanksgiving came about back when American people had slaves, and they decided to have a holiday to thank them, so Thanksgiving was when the owners would cook dinner for the slaves.
ME: That is the craziest thing I have ever heard. Where's Jamie from?
ENGLISH: Australia.

I give English the story about the Mayflower, the Puritans, Plymouth rock, the Indians, the feast, blah blah blah.

ENGLISH: Are you sure?
ME: Yes, I'm sure.
ENGLISH: So Thanksgiving really has nothing to do with slaves?
ME: No, it really doesn't.

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