By Syed Rahim

Thanksgiving, with all its customs and traditions, is a tough holiday to understand.  Every family is different, and one with its own set of intricacies.  Navigating the maize (pun intended) of etiquette for this festive holiday can be tough, which is why The Legend staff has compiled some tips to guide you, courtesy of the Piedmont Hills student body.

“You pretend to know everyone even if you don’t remember them,” says junior Caroline Chou

This is a great strategy for the absent-minded, which is why it works wonders on long forgotten third cousins and friends of family who just show up.  An alternate strategy for forgetting someone’s name is referring to them as “old sport.”

“Just offer people things until everyone is comfortable,” suggests junior Bendon Tran.

This is generally sound advice for any party that you’re hosting.  The spirit of giving and taking is no more celebrated than on Thanksgiving, when we remember European settlers peacefully taking advantage of Native peoples.  Friends like to be offered delicious things like bananas, apples and mayonnaise.  Unfortunately, these foods may not be the right fit for everyone, which is why you should experiment with others and see what people accept.  Just know when to stop.

“Offer to clean up after the meal,” states junior Parmpreet Gill.

Cleaning up is often the most tedious part of a good Thanksgiving dinner.  Being a good friend means offering to tidy up the table, even if it means spending a few extra hours interacting with people you dislike.  If you’re the host of a Thanksgiving feast, you can always opt out of clearing the table.  This means exiting the dining room, waiting one year and reemerging to give thanks once more.  This method is not recommended for various reasons, and it’s probably illegal in some states.

Hopefully this guide helps you in some way, because we get it: Thanksgiving is scary.  The dizzying arrays of mashed potatoes and “gravy” flood the senses like no other day of the year.  But there is hope yet.  Thanksgiving is about giving, and giving is about compromise.  Compromise means wearing a smile on your face as you wade through puddles of small children.  This Thursday, remember to give thanks for the privilege of being miserable.

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