I have become the Meat Mogul of the Midwest.
It started innocently enough with an invitation to Turkey Bingo. I don't like Bingo of any sort. I am too young for Bingo. It is long, it is boring, and it causes me to eat way more than I need to eat. The friend was desperate for companionship. I went. I had to buy cards. I won not just a turkey, but a 24 pound turkey with a pie (I chose frozen key lime), a box of premade stuffing, 2 cans of green beans, a can of mushroom soup, a can of fried onions, and a can of cranberry sauce. My friend would not help herself to any of the bounty.
I apparently bought the most food besides the food pantry at food co-op. I won a spiral ham (22 pounds), a turkey (12.4 pounds), 2 cans of green beans, a box of premade stuffing, a premade pumpkin pie, a mini container of premade Jello, a can of pumpkin, and a can of cranberry sauce.
I offered the bounty to family. Why? My husband was really enthralled with Golden Corral last year for Thanksgiving.
My dearly departed aunt and best friend had just gotten out of the hospital, and the usual suspects for Thanksgiving either didn't feel up to the turkey meal, or didn't feel up to much of anything besides broth. We took the girls to Golden Corral, thinking we could have everything we usually have without clean-up or a lot of fuss. Our family of four is small, and most people, we thought, would be with extended family and friends.
Golden Corral was filled to the brim with extended families and friends. Some had matching Thanksgiving sweatshirts. Some were dressed to the nines. Some brought board games. Some brought cards. Golden Corral had football on four TVs.
For those who wanted it, there was Thanksgiving goodness, with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, cranberries, and pumpkin pie. And mac n cheese. And steak. And fried fish. A full salad bar. A full dessert bar, which included red velvet cake, carrot cake, brownies, sugar-free chocolate layer cake, and bananas foster. Tacos could be had, as well as nachos and Asian offerings. The baked potato bar was also open for business.
People prayed out in the open without fear of embarrassment. Kids played together, even those not in the same families. Even Islam was represented as a family of 20 or so, ladies complete with hijab, husbands at the other end, children and teens scattered between them by gender, decided to celebrate the day without having to cook.
A good time was had by all: White, black, brown, tan, Christian, Muslim, Jew, or just plain turkey connoisseur. Friends who spent a rather lot on their meal and were not as pleased begged to know the location of the Golden Corral in question, and what time it opened on Thanksgiving this year.
Our Thanksgiving regulars were kind enough to extend an invitation for another year. This was not anticipated, and I told them I did not give them the meat simply to prompt an invitation. I was told that I was being silly, that we were family (and we are, by blood and marriage), and were expected, with or without the meat.
Hubby did have a request. In addition to the ham and turkey, I am bringing roast beef. Seems he acquired a taste for it at Golden Corral last year.