Thanksgiving is the day for food. Too much food in some cases, but enough about me. Not too many years back, a viewer was kind enough to share a menu that her husband had enjoyed when he was serving our country on the USS Sierra on Thanksgiving Day, 1944.
Here’s what those heroes were served:
Cream of Tomato Soup
Chow Chow Pickles
Roast Young Tom Turkey
Baked Virginia Candied Ham
Cream Whipped Potatoes
Buttered Whole Kernel Corn
Parker House Rolls
Mince Meat Pie
Vanilla Ice Cream
After all those food were listed, at the bottom, were three more items:
While most of those tasty treats are familiar to us, a few may raise a question. For example, Chow Chow Pickles. To the best of my understanding it has nothing to do with a green breed of dog. I believe it is a kind of relish. Listen to me. Pretending to just know that off the top of my pointy head. Who do I think I am? Alex Trebek? I looked it up. A Parker House roll gets its name from the Parker House Hotel in Boston…half an oval of flaky goodness. As for mince meat pie…well, I know cartoon characters used to say “I’ll make mince meat outtaya!” In reality, it is a mixture of meat and fruit and spices.
The last three things on the list are, to me, the most interesting. I knew a very humble man who served in the Navy during World War II. He saw action at Okinawa and many other places when he was barely out of high school. I think of him and how excited he would’ve been to have a handful of mixed nuts and a smoke as he drifted over the waves, thousands of miles away from home. As the old song from that era put it “Little Things Mean A Lot.”
The menu is a fascinating bit of history but it is also a reminder to use part of our Thanksgiving to say thanks to all this country’s veterans as well as today’s generation of men and women serving in faraway lands. Just a prayerful thought or two in the middle of all the food and football and lighting ceremonies. It may not seem like much but…well, you know the song.