Huddle: Dream guests for Thanksgiving dinner


Thanksgiving is a time when you are surrounded by friends or family. This can go both ways: You’re either spending time with loved ones whose company you enjoy, or you are stuck with a bunch of people who make you want to throw turkey legs at them. Wouldn’t it be great if you could invite anyone in the world over for a special Turkey Day? Who would that be? And, to make it even more specific, which gay lady would be the one taking her place at your dinner table?

The Linster: This is tougher for me than it should be, because I think too much. While I’d love to have one of my crushes over for the feast (ahem), I know that trying to relax and watch football with Arizona Robbins would be impossible. And having a brilliant and funny guest like Rachel Maddow would be intimidating. I even considered Cat Cora, but I suppose asking someone over to cook the entire meal would be impolite. So, in the holiday spirit, I choose Michelle Paradise because one of my dearest friends with whom I always share T-Day is convinced that they would fall madly in love if only they could meet. So come on over Michelle — mimosas start at 1.

Bridget McManus: Hillary Clinton! Wait, does the lesbian have to be out? If so, I’m going with Judy Gold. She’s absolutely hilarious! Since I’m a vegetarian and I’m not eating turkey I’ll use my mouth for laughing instead of chewing. Oh and having my wife Karman around would be cool, too.

Dorothy Snarker: If I could invite any lesbian to Thanksgiving, it would have to be Luce from Imagine Me & You. My reasons are multi-fold, though first and foremost it would mean I would be sitting across from someone who looks just like Lena Headey all during dinner. So, you know, there’s that.

Second, Luce is unfailingly polite, even if the food turns out to be below par. And as a fairly horrible cook, I would need that kind of false flattery to make it through the meal. Though, when pressed, she will be direct and honest about the food. Which is also a good trait. And she would say it all in that delicious, delicious accent. What? Heather Hogan can’t be the only one who gets to swoon over foreign accents at her traditional American holiday feast.

Third, you know Luce would be game for yelling at the television while watching Thanksgiving football. In fact, I’m pretty sure she’d be able to put everyone else to shame with her projection powers. Just look out all players wearing the No.9, because I think you’ll even be able to hear her call you a wanker through the TV.

And then, lest we forget, Luce is a florist. So she is sure to bring just the most spectacular bouquet of flowers with her and, here’s a secret about me, I love it when girls bring me flowers.

So, to recap: Lena, polite, accent, wanker, flowers.

Karman Kregloe: I would be very happy to have Beth Ditto join me and my family for the holiday dinner. Because she is Southern, I could probably count on her to bring a plate of good biscuits (a rare commodity in Los Angeles). Later, she would take our impromptu post-dinner jam session to a completely different level. Can you even imagine what “Jingle Bell Rock” might sound like if sung by La Ditto?

Grace Chu: I didn’t think this question would be so difficult to answer. There are many famous lesbians to choose from, both real and fictional, but I don’t know any of them in real life. Thanksgiving is a very big, very important holiday. This is because it revolves around immense amounts of food. If there is one thing my friends know about me it is that I cherish my food time like Gollum cherishes his ring. I want to eat in peace, because I love food, and anything that diminishes my enjoyment of food is evil and bad. Making awkward conversations with high profile strangers would simply stress me out, which would make the food less tasty, and the thought of not having a delicious Thanksgiving dinner fills me with alarm.

Scenario 1 – Ilene Chaiken

Me: I have a serious question to ask you.

Ilene Chaiken: OK. Go ahead.

Me: Did you put me on a reality show without my knowledge? There are some very bizarre coincidences and patterns in my lesbian dating life and friendship circles that can only be attributed to outside meddling or foul play. I’ve seen The Truman Show, and I suspect I may have been unwittingly cast on the New York City lesbian version of the reality show portrayed in that film. I think you may be behind much of the tomfoolery that seems to enter and re-enter my life on a regular basis.

Ilene Chaiken: I think you need to remember to take your meds.

Me: I bet it’s because you didn’t like my review of the first season of The Real L Word, and now you’re punishing me.

Ilene Chaiken: I don’t even know who you are.

Me: Should I introduce myself?

Ilene Chaiken: I’m Ilene Chaiken. I don’t need to know who you are. Pass the mashed potatoes.

Scenario 2 – Whitney Mixter

Whitney Mixter: Can you pass the creamed corn?

Me: [throws up in mouth]

Scenario 3 – Peppermint Patty

Me: Do you want some turkey?

Peppermint Patty: I’m a cartoon. I’m two dimensional and have no mass, so I can’t eat.

Me: Sorry, sir.

On Thanksgiving, if I must choose any lesbian or lesbians in the world to invite to dinner, I’ll just invite my friends, thank you very much. Hi guys, come over! (If you read this on your own and I didn’t force you to come here to read this, you get served first.)

Courtney Gillette: This fantasy — people I’d invite over for Thanksgiving to my small kitchen table — would be a bunch of my favorite lesbian writers. Having just finished my first semester in an MFA program (where much of my writing hours were spent lying on the floor of my office, clutching my cat, and wondering “What am I doing with my life?”), I think a table that included Dorothy Allison, Jacqueline Woodson and Alison Smith would make this year’s pumpkin pie and mashed potatoes all the better.

Dorothy Allison, so she could give me a lot of tough love about this career I’ve chosen; Jacqueline Woodson, so I could bask in the talent that has written the majority of my favorite YA novels; and Alison Smith, so I can find out what the author of my favorite memoir, Name All The Animals, is up to these days. (I mean, that scene where she first kisses Terry, and she remembers how the metal of an earring tastes in her mouth? If I could write a memoir that’s a fraction as good I’ll die happy.)

The evening would pass with lots of laughs, perfectly moist turkey, and so much writing wisdom that it will be the pivotal event in my writing career and what I credit my success to when I accept my National Book Award. And, of course, one of them would also be able to tell me how to make a perfect pie crust (butter or Crisco? Should I really use vodka?), and the night would end with full bellies and their agents’ phone numbers and plans for me to move into one of their friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend’s cabin in Vermont to use as a writer’s residency for the rest of my life. And I’d be able to find the matching lids to all the Tupperware when I go to package up leftovers for them in gratitude.

Marcie Bianco: ‘d like Jenny from The L Word to be at a Thanksgiving table — because what is Thanksgiving without a table full of The Crazy?

Trish Bendix: I’d invite my favorite essayist, Terry Castle, because not only does she write some of my favorite things, but she’s also an accomplished artist and was a friend to Susan Sontag. I would spend the entire time trying to impress her and hope she didn’t think I was boring or dumb or too young to understand anything.

Heather Hogan: This is how it would go: Helen Stewart and I would be doing our morning making out and I’d be like, “Cripes. I forgot my family is coming for Thanksgiving dinner today.” And she’d bark, “What!” And even though it’s not really a Scottish word, it would sound super Scottish because her accent is at its thickest when she’s pissed off or turned on. She’d start passive-aggressively cleaning the house with her iPod on, refusing to look at me, and I’d feel like crap, of course, because even though she fell in love with me for my artist’s temperament, it does clash with her control freakery ways. I could have at least warned her I’d volunteered to host my family’s Thanksgiving.

The meal would be delicious and my family would be lovely, but Helen would still refuse to speak to me, or make eye contact with me. Then, after I served my delicious pecan pie for dessert, my nephew and I would play Legos in the living room and he’d say, “Is Aunt Helen mad at me? She hasn’t smiled at me all day.” And I’d say, “No, little lamb. Aunt Helen is mad at me.” He’d go, “Were you a twat again?” (Because my nephew totally knows how to use the word “twat” in context.) And I’d hand him the fully-functioning Harry Potter Knight Bus I made out of Legos and say, “Yup.” Then I’d look over the top of his head and see Helen gazing at me in that adoring way she has that means, “I want to get you pregnant with my babies.”

Later that night, I’d be washing dishes and she’d hug me from behind and start in on a historic tirade about the origins of American Thanksgiving. And I’d say, “You know I love it when you talk nerdy to me.” And then we’d end the night the way we started the morning: With some making out. For which I would be very thankful.

Ali Davis: At first, I gave a lot of thought to inviting Rachel Maddow and Susan Mikula to Thanksgiving. Maddow’s famous polite charm and drink-mixing skills would be a welcome addition to any celebration, and Mikula could take hauntingly beautiful photographs of the family and place settings.

But then I remembered that Rachel and I are in a longstanding fight over the art and science of freehand pouring (that only one of us knows about). My family can handle political discussions, but a mixology dispute might get ugly.

So instead I’d invite Athena, Greek goddess of wisdom, courage, righteous warfare, justice, the arts, and general badassery. I know she’s not out, but look at that résumé! Look at that helmet! And spending thousands of years as a “virgin” goddess? Please.

She’d immediately bond with my mom, who loves a bold hat and anyone with the courage to wear one. Mom would tell her stories about what a stubborn little kid I was and Athena would be all, “I burst fully-formed out of my father’s skull!” Oh, how we’d laugh.

The first sign that you’ve been taken in as one of the clan is that Mom puts you to work in the kitchen. I’d explain to Athena that we’d be eating some unfamiliar foods and that the turkey is a revered New World bird and HOLY CATS, WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH THAT SPEAR? But then bingo: giblets are out and ready for gravy.

Over dinner, I’d try not to go into full-on nerdcrush mode as grey-eyed Pallas chatted knowledgeably about the arts, world events, and philosophy, and then my sister would bring up the fact that I’ve been recapping Dancing with the Stars and I’d kick her under the table.

After dinner, Athena and my stepdad would bond over football as he explained the rules and got furious with her over bad calls and NO SMITING THE REFEREES IN THERE, do you hear me?

Later in the evening, Athena and I would share a slice of pumpkin pie and, just to see, I would put an adorable dab of whipped cream on her nose, and then she would turn me into a spider for such unthinkable disrespect.

But it would be worth it.


Who do you wish was at your Thanksgiving table?

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