Nothing with eyes. That was the rule for a long time. Fish with heads were not and are not allowed to gaze up at us from the plate. More recently in my family the rule has spread to turkey – it should not look too much like a bird. Turkey breast, turkey roast (not the cheap ones) but not bird. I have not questioned this too deeply, as I do not even eat turkey but I am curious.
That curiosity makes me reflect on how we give thanks. Thank-you is such an easy thing to say, or is it? It is easy to thank people we like. Families and friends usually find the grace to accept each other, despite the more annoying parts of being human. But what about people who we do not like, people who challenge us? Do we throw off a mumbled word or do we let ourselves be open to the change which unexpected kindness or generosity might bring in us.
As we give thanks for the people and things in our lives perhaps we should pause a second and consider where thank-you is difficult for us. Where thank-you might make us feel vulnerable. Even with God in our quietest moments, can we let go enough not to gloss over our thanks but to explore its implications and limitations.
This week and beyond say thank-you freely, to God, to loved ones, to each other. Just remember, it is not only about the food on our plates but the choice to talk turkey both with God, each other and ourselves.