I don’t know about the rest of you, but Thanksgiving is always a bittersweet holiday for me. The food is delicious, family is usually wonderful, and it’s all-around a good time. But I think most of us have at least one person we can count on to irritate the crap out of us while we’re trying to focus on the positive (the bird) and keep our kids from killing their cousins.
We love that person, but we hate that person. They bring up sensitive subjects, they toot their horn, they brag…they seem to love every minute of the holiday while we sit tortured and torn. “That guy” seems to get it all while we all dance around him/her.
Well…what if that could be you?
I’m here to deliver the good news: It can! As writers, we are particularly adept at being creative and using our skills for the greater good: annoying other people. Whether it be correcting sentence structure, building a dramatic scene, or doing good things for others’ poor vocabulary, writers have an important role to play in familial conflict.
So here are 6 ways you can beat “that guy” by being “that guy” and get more enjoyment out of this Thanksgiving.
- Be a Grammar Nazi
Father: “So Jane, I hear you’ve had much success as a marketer. To who do you owe the credit?”
Jane: “I’m sorry, father, but the proper way to ask that question is ‘To whom do you owe the credit?’ Based on the way you’ve framed the question, my answer at this point would appropriately be: ‘Why, gol’ darnit, I ain’t got no one to thank but those folks who gave me a chance.’ Please try again with more eloquence and I’ll be happy to provide you with an equally elegant response.”
2. Handle Drama with More Drama – Better Drama
Brother to table full of democrats: “Aren’t you guys excited about President-Elect Trump? He’s going to do such a fantastic job, you have to agree!”
Jane, in monotonous tone with an edge of foreboding: “That turkey sitting in front you was burned and tortured at the stake until its dying breath with the kind of pain only survivors of Guantanamo can understand.”
Jane: *Takes bite of mashed potatoes* “Are we still going to Disneyland this year?”
3. Consistently Make Suggestions for Poor Vocabulary
Husband: “I just don’t think that people always see me the way I really am.”
Jane: “Perceive. I just don’t think that people always perceive me the way I really am.”
Husband: “Will you quit it with corrections? It’s annoying.”
Jane: “Will you abstain from the instructional commentary? It’s irksome.”
Husband: “Oh, my God…”
Me: “Oh, Celestial Body of questionable existence…”
4. Hold a Spelling Bee for Political Terminology
Jane: “Okay, Mom. Your word is: Filibuster.”
5. Toss Out Thinly-Veiled Insults About Your Nieces’ and Nephews’ Grammar
Jane: “Tommy is so adorable. His misuse of conditional clauses that use the were- subjunctive mode is particularly loveable.
6. Make a Deliberate Decision to Practice Punctuation by Vocalizing Its Use
Sister: “I feel like my kids have made a lot of progress this year – “
Sister: “But it’s definitely come at a price.”
Sister: “What on earth are you doing?”
Jane, with index finger raised, “Question mark-exclamation point!”