Avoiding Family Political Talk

This is one of the most tense years I can remember, particularly politically. Which is going to make for a lot of tense discussions around the Thanksgiving dinner table. It doesn’t seem to matter what the subject matter is, it can always loop back to some sort of political disagreement.
For many of us, trying to have a productive or civil discussion about politics with our family is a lost cause, leading only to shouting, condescension, hurt feelings and more excuses to drink.
But no more! Let me help you and your family .It’s hard to navigate topics that won’t immediately spark shouting matches (if it does happen, remember, the loudest person ALWAYS wins). Thankfully for you, I exist and you’re reading this. Here are some sure-fire, non-controversial topics all can enjoy around the table at Thanksgiving:
  • Who was that aunt that always smelled like canned tuna? What was up with that? (You ALL have one).
  • What would you Pilgrim name be? Mine would be Ignatius Ebenezer Jairus Jr.
  • Are the people who cook the food at Applebee’s allowed to call themselves “Chefs?”
  • Dogs are really only responding to the name their owners gave them because they know that’s the response the owner wants, but what if they’re always wondering, “hey, human, I don’t know what you think my name is, I’ll fetch your paper, but I wish you’d call me Slobber Waggles, the name my multi-nippled mother bestowed upon me.”
  •  Wouldn’t it have been weird to play Connect 4 or Battleship with Prince?
  • How toxic jingoism has led to the erosion of people looking out for the good of society in favor of a rise in plutocracy. (Trust me, your dumb Uncle won’t know what any of that means and move on to talk about The Bachelor.)
  • Speaking of being too full, what do you think happened to the Guiness Book of Records World’s Fattest Twins who were on the motorcycles?
  • How terrifying would it be to be stuck in the Henson Studios after dark with all of the lifeless Muppets just sitting there on hooks, staring at you?
  • What’s the best Thanksgiving movie? Remember, all answers that aren’t Planes, Trains and Automobiles are wrong.
  • What are the best munchkins? Smurf? Wizard of Oz? Snow White?
  • When did you give up?
That should be able to get you through at least the hour it takes to for you to muster up the ability to rise from the table and go purge in the bathroom.
Happy Thanksgiving to all and to all a good, buttery poop.


Add yours →

  1. Debra She Who Seeks November 23, 2017 — 1:41 pm

    Yeah, for gawd’s sake, save all that fighting and acrimony for the Airing of the Grievances and the Feats of Strength at Festivus where they belong!

    Incidentally, my Pilgrim name would still be Debra or, as it is spelled in the Bible, Deborah. Apparently it was staggeringly popular among Puritans of the 17th century. It wouldn’t be popular again until the mid-1950s when Debbie Reynolds became a movie star.


  2. I’ve got family members who can’t be in the same room because they can’t help themselves when it comes to delving into politics.

    It’s not worth it. These are all excellent alternatives.


  3. I don’t have a problem with avoiding family political discussions. I simply don’t talk to my family. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.



  4. When I was in my 20’s until my 50’s, every Thanksgiving was spent at my parent’s table telling the one joke or funny comment that got my brothers to blow wine through their nose when they drank. It’s all about the timing. I’ve only succeeded a few times. My husband, David was witness to my success when I got my brother when he made a wisecrack about Obama. I came back on him and said something so funny that I not only got him but my sister-in-law just as they were in the middle of drinking their wine. Talk about a burn. Alcoholic drinks hurt like hell.


  5. The smurfs are by far the best munchkins, and that question is my favorite. Hmm, I wonder why. Yeah, yeah, anyway…Hope you had a great, noncontroversial holiday weekend.


  6. Thankfully, I survived thankgiving this year without too much fighting. Mostly because we talked about weird extended family members who weren’t present. (“DId you SEE what she wrote on FACEBOOK??”) Makes me feel kind of icky, but got me through dinner.


  7. abeerfortheshower December 4, 2017 — 11:34 am

    In my family, we don’t fight about politics. We just fight about everything else. I can’t figure out whether that’s better or worse. “What are the best munchkins?” is easily something that could lead to fisticuffs.


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