Ah, Thanksgiving. Oh, what will I ever eat? There’s the gravy that’s thickened with cornstarch and turkey that can’t be stuffed with delicious stuffing, and the vegetables must be broccoli and, if my memory from last year is correct, no way in hell can there be macaroni and cheese. Unless that macaroni is hand-pressed from a virgin and is delivered by a unicorn. But not a white one. NO! It has to be a chickpea-colored unicorn.
Here’s the rub: I am allergic to gluten-free products. Like, my stomach churns and I can’t see straight and I need my own allergic-to-gluten-free-parade that will travel in front of the gluten-free folks because I can’t be downwind otherwise I’ll begin to exhibit crazy eyes and uncontrollable drooling and then I’ll be in the hospital begging, pleading for chicken parmigiana and spaghetti. Just get me a damn starch already, Doc. A real one!
Last year at the Henry Family Thanksgiving, the bulletin was that we had a gluten-free in our midst. And there was potential for contamination everywhere. No one said “Hey, remember to wash your hands before dinner.” Nope. I could have basted the turkey in piss hands and no one would have cared. But if I just so happened to run naked through a wheat field (which is a personal Thanksgiving tradition of mine), I would have been a goner. And so would the gluten-free guest in our midst.
My father let it be known that if I made any gluten-free jokes, he would bring out his shotgun and shoot me with celiac and then he would make me a special Thanksgiving dinner filled with all the shit that would kill me.
Aww, he loves me.
So, of course, I made gluten-free jokes, which amounted to me telling everyone that I was allergic to gluten-free, which is basically gluten free-free. I made place cards that said: Kid, Shotgun, Whiner, Sister and Gluten-Free-Free. Then I drew a kitten face over mine because who doesn’t love kittens?
Fascists with shotguns, that’s who.
Only my sister thought it was funny, but that’s because she had piss hands and only told me after the fact.* Sitting across from a shotgun with celiac’s disease is a game of Russian roulette if there ever was one. I was sweating bullets the gun didn’t have. It was totally intense.
And then I found out that my sister has not one, but two guns and that she hid them up high so I couldn’t get them. What an asshole.
*My sister probably didn’t have piss hands. I’ve never even heard her fart but when I do, it will be the best day, ever. She really does have two guns.