DC-area residents share funny and strange Thanksgiving memories

WTOP's Scott Gelman spoke to some D.C.-area residents to figure out what funny or bizarre moments make their list of Thanksgiving memories.

Thanksgiving isn’t just a time for turkey, stuffing and tryptophan-induced late-afternoon naps. It’s also a time for unique family stories, complicated conversations over a meal and memories that definitely won’t be forgotten any time soon.

WTOP sent Scott Gelman on a trip around the D.C. region to figure out what funny or bizarre moments make their list of Thanksgiving memories.

While a bunch of people along Bethesda Row told our intrepid reporter — who fondly recalled a few burned rolls some Thanksgiving meals ago — they didn’t have any weird or comical stories from previous years, some turkey day stories marked a highlight.

“Once, our Christmas tree fell and all of our ornaments broke,” Peyton told WTOP.

Summer told WTOP that one of the Thanksgiving dinners she had with a friend’s grandparents really met cultural expectations.

“I’m English; we don’t really celebrate Thanksgiving. So all of the cliches about American Thanksgiving were absolutely there. … The bickering, the bickering among family members, the absolute shots fired, the drama between [family] masked by politeness and niceties. The sly comments,” Summer said.

In a moment reminiscent of the final scene in College Road Trip starring Raven Symone and Martin Lawrence, Matthew shared a hilarious holiday visit from his daughter’s boyfriend.

“He sat on one of the chairs that I thought I fixed, and … in the middle of that dinner, it completely collapsed,” Matthew told WTOP. The boyfriend, he said, “was kind of nervous [laughing], but everyone else broke out and laughed. It was very much funny.”

Taylor told WTOP that Thanksgiving looked a little charred for their family.

“One year, I completely burned a turkey. And we couldn’t eat it,” Taylor said. “Everybody was laughing because, at the end of the day, everyone was together. And that’s what Thanksgiving is all about.”

Kara said the highlight of her Thanksgiving had to be “just about anything my grandma said.”

“Last year, I think it was that she got kicked out of her — it was either Mahjong or Rummikub — league for some alleged cheating,” she said.

And, of course, no one could forget the furry friends who make for unforgettable Thanksgiving stories. One person said a big Puggle named Bentley definitely enjoyed a Turkey Day triumph.

“My parents had this really fat dog and the dog was wandering around the kitchen and then there was like too much gravy in the turkey tray,” the person told WTOP. “And it consolidated, and then, it was like a levee breaking, and then the dog was just there with gravy raining on his head. And it was probably the best day of his life.”

It might not be as wonderful as Bentley’s gravy miracle, but you and your family still have time to make memories, even if they’re not so great, throughout this Thanksgiving Day.

WTOP’s Scott Gelman contributed to this report.

Ivy Lyons

Ivy Lyons is a digital journalist for WTOP.com. Since 2018, they have worked on Capitol Hill, at NBC News in Washington, and with WJLA in Washington.

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