Hello, friends. You’re looking well. That’s a very interesting costume. You’re a pilgrim, I take it? I love how you fashioned a pilgrim hat out of a bucket and your own belt. Maybe let’s not drink anymore, okay?
Friends, today we celebrate all we have for which we’re thankful. It’s a day of connecting with loved ones, being grateful and enjoying the company of those around us. I hope that’s precisely what you’re doing, but just in case yours is a family where drama sets in upon dinner, your pal Tomlin is happy to help with a troubleshooting guide for the Thanksgiving holiday. Hope this helps. I’m thankful for all of you guys today. Happy Thanksgiving, gang. Just put a bunch of that food in a bag to go for me will you? I’m not staying to eat here. No offense.
THE SITUATION: You want to watch the Wildcats play the South Florida Bulls at the Hoophall Miami Invitational but your family wants to raise Christmas decorations and a tree at your home.
HOW TO DEAL: Don’t make waves. DVR the game on ESPN, stay off social media, and relax later with the game after a great day of spending time with your loved ones in the Christmas spirit. It’s just South Florida. Our chances are good that it won’t be too much of a barnburner.
THE SITUATION: Your Cardinal-loving in-laws are talking some friendly smack about the impending game on Saturday.
HOW TO DEAL: Oh, this classic dilemma; while it’s terribly rude of them to antagonize a UK-loving son-in-law on the holidays, it’s important to remember that drinking a 1.75 of Hennessy and hotboxing a blunt in their 2012 Hyundai Accent will cloud the mind of your aged sixty-something mother- and father-in-law, leading to unfounded and cocksure claims. Laugh it off; there’s no reason to storm out of the tanning salon they own — that’s only going to exacerbate the situation. If you must retaliate, choose rather to just laugh, kiss their daughter on the cheek and remind her parents that you’ve been doing to her for several years what Bobby Petrino is doing now to the sanctity of the Louisville Program. Then pull up a chair to their Thanksgiving party sub, pour yourself a Crown Royal and orange soda and try to make the best of the holiday.
THE SITUATION: Your nephew Miles has chosen, against your advice, to attend a college closer to home rather than branch out and expand his horizons out-of-state.
HOW TO DEAL: Be supportive. Remind him that although winters can be cold in East Lansing, and if he’s cool slumming it against cakewalks like Rutgers and Nebraska, that’s fine by you and you’ll support his decision. Then give him a hug, a handshake, and tell him he’s dead to you. It’s tough love but someday he’ll respect you for it. For added emphasis, pull out a copy of your will (make sure it’s just a copy!) and burn it in the yard as you tell him he’s throwing his future away for a Final Four appearance at best.
THE SITUATION: Everyone is badmouthing your cousin Aaron, who didn’t bother to show up to Thanksgiving dinner.
HOW TO DEAL: Defend your cousin in his absence. It’s not right for your family to speak ill about someone who isn’t present — and besides, it’s not like the Packers play every Thanksgiving. Turn the tables on the perpetrators by pointing out the platinum silver table you’re eating on, the diamond encrusted utensils everyone is using, the rare jade-sculpted chairs everyone is sitting on and the house made of solid gold he bought for your aunt and uncle. Also, remind them that Olivia Munn will be around at Christmas and she’s totally hot.
THE SITUATION: Your uncle insists on inviting his friend and her family to Thanksgiving dinner.
HOW TO DEAL: Try your best to get along with your uncle Andre’s friends — a mother and her two friendly daughters — as if they were part of your own family. Smile and clap along as they sexy-dance on a load-bearing column in the finished basement and tell stories of some of their favorite basketball players. DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES DRINK AFTER THEM. Remember, strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet and who will sometimes have sex with you for money!
THE SITUATION: While everyone was out playing football in the yard, Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings climbed up on the kitchen counter and ate all the Thanksgiving dinner.
HOW TO DEAL: Be firm with Coach Stallings by pointing his face at the mess and telling him he’s been bad. Then make him go out in the yard. He won’t learn anything if you don’t discipline him right away.
THE SITUATION: While attending the UK-Louisville football game on Saturday, your Louisville fan brother-in-law gets drunk and, while shouting expletive-laden Louisville chants and urinating into a large, open sewer grate, teeters on the edge for a moment with no one around to see it.
HOW TO DEAL: No one will ever know what happened. If you can live with it, you know what you have to do. Can you live with it? Okay. We will take this to our grave, do you hear me? OUR GRAVE. This is going to be our secret now. Don’t fall apart on me. You can’t fall apart on me. It’s now or never. We’re bonded together. If you I go down, you go down. This is our thing for life; you got that? Now let’s do this on three.