Throughout its history, the members of Shearith Israel have observed Thanksgiving by reciting in synagogue the same psalms of praise and gratitude sung by Jews all over the world on festive days like Hanukkah.
Since 1981, I've spent every Thanksgiving Day broadcasting a game, and it is one of my favorite days. You can say, 'Woe is me, I never get to be part of the tradition,' or you can say, 'Heck, we've got our own tradition, and it's pretty good.'
One cannot rule out a blizzard in Minnesota after Labor Day, and so when I travel for Thanksgiving or any time in the fall, I am careful to fly into Des Moines instead of Minneapolis and then drive the 200 miles north to my hometown.
My most memorable meal is every Thanksgiving. I love the food: the turkey and stuffing; the sweet potatoes and rice, which come from my mother's Southern heritage; the mashed potatoes, which come from my wife's Midwestern roots; the Campbell's green-bean casserole; and of course, pumpkin pie.
My dad is a big Outlaw country guy - Johnny Cash, Johnny Horton, Waylon, Willie. He loves Elvis and turned me onto Elvis. He was always playing me stuff. He and I would sing and entertain the family. We'd have a little skit on Thanksgiving or whatever.
On Thanksgiving I will stop to give thanks that my family is safe and healthy, especially because I realize that, following the tragedies of this year, it is all too real a possibility that they might not have been.
My tradition, as an adult, is to have an open-door policy on Thanksgiving. I always host, and I welcome absolutely anyone into my home. I think it's really special. If people are going through hard times or not getting along well with their family, they flock to my house. And I'll have my tree up!
Shopmas now begins on Thanksgiving Day. Apparently, escaping the families you cannot stand to spend another minute with on Thanksgiving Day to go buy them gifts is how some Americans show their affection for one another. Weird.
I really don't do much on the night of Thanksgiving other than bring the wine and carve the turkey. My contribution comes the day after, in the form of breakfast. I usually just forage through the leftovers for things that will go well with eggs.
Something I didn't even know was on my bucket list has been achieved. I have cooked Thanksgiving dinner with Martha Stewart. I vow to follow the gospel of her teachings and do my very best in the remarkably less glamorous kitchen of my own home... without the luxury of magically appearing prep bowls filled by a staff of sous chefs.