You tell yourself you're going to take only a small portion of this and a taste of that, saving plenty of room for dessert, during which you intend to take only a sliver of that and maybe a modest spoonful of this. When all is done you might as well have been competitive eating. What started out as manners ("Please pass the potatoes!") has devolved into greasy-fingered gestures and grunts ("Ugh... Give... More..."). You really don't even want dessert, but you cram it down regardless because you feel morally obligated. After all, everyone went to the trouble of baking.
Somewhere during the early stages of dinner: phase one, I heard a strange noise coming from the kitchen. It might have been the dishwasher running, only we hadn't yet loaded the first dish. It might have been the kitchen faucet running, only it wasn't. Instead, it turned out to be the frantic lapping of our six-pound Havanese, Lola.
The problem wasn't really Lola. Lola was simply doing what any dog would do if turkey juices were flowing freely from the carved carcass on the countertop. The problem also wasn't the cracked cutting board that allowed the turkey juices to escape and flow to the floor. No, the problem was the fact of turkey juices hitting Lola square on the head as she stood there in her own little tryptophan-laced Thanksgiving celebration.
In case you've never soaked you hair with seasoned turkey grease, let me assure you it has some staying power. Three baths later the savory aroma of thyme, rosemary and tarragon continued to waft from Lola's head and her usually toussled top lay heavy between her ears. Try as we did over the next few days, it wasn't until the professional groomers got hold of her several weeks later that all was set right.