The Phenomenon: Surviving Thanksgiving
The Bars: Holiday Cocktail Lounge, Cherry Tavern, Off the Wagon
Thanksgiving is a time for wholesomeness. Without the religious crap associated with that other holiday, everyone can conscionably participate in Thanksgiving’s traditions secure in the knowledge that only foreigners and still-bitter-about-the-Trail-of-Tears Native Americans have reason to feel left out. Good little boys and girls scramble to make late-Wednesday flights and trains, shedding their pretentious Williamsburg shellacs and returning once again to their ancestral homelands of Texas, Iowa, or Westchester. Families gather to break bread together, to give thanks for their bounty, to drink too much and throw things. The spicy scent of cooling pumpkin pie, the buzz of a TV football game, the dull ache of shopping while constipated — these are sensations of Thanksgiving. Go home to your families, kids, and get drunk on the table wine of your parents’ passive-aggressive disapproval.
But what about the rest of you? The waited-too-long-to-book-tickets, the punishing-your-crazy-family, the lazy? Sure, you could cobble together some kind of friend-based holiday, scrounging up the leftovers of your acquaintances for a half-assed potluck, but c’mon. That’s not why you stayed here, is it? It’s not just about spiting your mother, it’s about saying “fuck you” to the whole fake-ass tradition. While your friends are trying to avoid having to give the blessing, you should be doing something gritty, like barfing scotch into a gutter or shooting up heroin. Maybe both! The point is, you need to make sure your Thanksgiving is as depressing and anti-mashed potatoes as possible, or you might as well have caught that Thursday 6am flight to Dayton International.
Start out at the Holiday Cocktail Lounge (St. Mark’s and First Ave), because imagining you drinking alone at a place like that on Thanksgiving is exactly what your mother does in her darkest moments. Cruise on over to the Cherry Tavern (6th St. and First Ave) for some Tijuana specials and drunken blabbering at the bartender. Feel free to wander around hazily, stopping in anywhere that looks untrendily dirty (none of that cutesy fake dive stuff for you: this is supposed to be depressing, not hip). (Then — and here’s the kicker — stagger across town to Off the Wagon (Macdougal and Bleecker Sts.) and pick up a hammered college girl. Bonus points if you do it in the bathroom. Puke and drunk dial as needed. Happy turkey day, everybody, and next year remember to book your goddamn flight.