What's Your Fondest Turkey Day Memory?
My Turkey Day memories date to the first celebration in 1991, when I was a freshman in high school and very annoyed that I was expected to spend the day with my family instead of holing up in my room watching 30 hours of MST3K.
In an era when I was obsessively collecting episodes by taping them, commercials and all, once a week, Turkey Day was an embarrassment of riches: fifteen episodes all in one go. That was five VHS tapes if I recorded them on the lowest quality! Which I did, because I was a freshman in high school without a part time job and things like blank VHS tapes cost money I did not always have to spend.
The lead up to the marathon was thrilling. Comedy Central ran promos in which Joel and the bots sang a reworked Thanksgiving hymn and Crow offered turkey facts, like that “turkey contains enough L-tryptophan to knock you on your sorry Thanksgiving ass.”
These promotional bits are forever seared into my brain. I would not be able to watch the whole marathon live, but I’d certainly be able to pop in and check that my VCR was recording, and maybe get to watch a few minutes before anyone noticed I’d disappeared. Later, when my family obligations were done, I stayed up most of the night watching what I could of the back third in solitude. It was glorious.
By 1993 I still couldn’t get away with spending my day in front of the television, which was all the more disappointing as that year Comedy Central actually took the Turkey Day celebration to a MSTie’s home, and filmed clips of the resulting party, with attendees in costume talking about their love for the show. This was mesmerizing to me -- other people who knew about and loved this series as much as I did? they exist? -- and I was so excited to realize I wasn’t the only person in the world who felt this way, even if I seemingly was the only person in my high school.
(Whatever became of Debbie Tobin of Edina, Minnesota? Are you still out there, Debbie?)
In the years since, I’ve still never spent a Turkey Day in full marathon mode, although I’ve usually been able to carve (ha) out a little time to enjoy an episode or two as part of my holiday. In the spirit of the season, however, I think it would be fun to hear Turkey Day memories from all of you, MSTie pals. Be they recent or in the distant past, email me your recollections to email@example.com and I’ll pull together some of them to share here on MST3K.com next week, leading up to this year’s Turkey Day marathon.
Have a great holiday, and remember: don’t be afraid to say no to organ meats this holiday season.