The workshop for humor writing, human interest writing, networking and getting published

Erma Bombeck Wrighters' Workshop Banner

Turkey day has become chopped liver

I just heard Tony Bennett on the radio singing, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.” And Thanksgiving is several days away. Like Christmas, (and unlike Halloween), Thanksgiving is an actual holiday. But it has been lost in the Christmas hype.

Maybe Thanksgiving would get more respect if it were not tucked in between Halloween and Christmas. So I vote that we move Thanksgiving to January. January is a pretty depressing month, so I believe Thanksgiving should be moved from the fourth Thursday in November, to the fourth Thursday in January. That way, people won’t be preoccupied with Black Friday.

No one has any money left in January anyway, so the focus would be on thankfulness – thankful that Christmas is over and the relatives are gone. And surely they wouldn’t return in January, would they? And turkey in January tastes just as good as it does in November.

I know turkey day was carved in stone by an act of Congress in 1941, to be celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November; but they never saw Black Friday coming. Nor Walmart. I believe had they envisioned the commercialism that would occur between Thanksgiving and Christmas, they never would’ve have chosen the fourth Thursday in November to celebrate Thanksgiving.

And Congress had no way of knowing that Halloween would become the second largest commercial holiday – next to Christmas – in America. Tucked in between lies poor little Thanksgiving. Indulge on turkey as you wish, but chopped liver is what this holiday has become.

Anyhow, I just wish the air leading up to Thanksgiving could be filled with music fit for the occasion. But the only songs that even come close are buried in church hymnals. There are just no secular songs that hint of Thanksgiving.

Bing Crosby singing, “I’m Dreaming of a White Thanksgiving,” probably wouldn’t have much of a ring to it, I suppose. Neither would Tony Bennett singing “I’ll Be Home For Thanksgiving,” or Elvis singing, “I’ll Have a Blue Thanksgiving Without You.”

But if dogs can bark, “Jingle Bells,” you’d think “The Chipmunks” could’ve come up with a Tom Turkey tune that marched to a different drum stick.

Let’s face it. When it comes to holiday music, Thanksgiving will always play second fiddle.

—Raymond Reid

Raymond Reid is a national award-winning humor columnist. He can be contacted at

Reflections of Erma