By: Calder Schweitzer
Families across Canada celebrated Thanksgiving this past weekend, in celebration of a plentiful harvest that only a fraction of them actually took part in. The staple of Thanksgiving is, of course, the food, and Canadians know all too well that, while the holiday technically only lasts a weekend, it is a year-round celebration. This is mainly due to the fact that Thanksgiving yields so many goddamn leftovers that 97% of households survive on just that until the next Thanksgiving.
The number of people with eyes too big for their bellies has increased greatly since the days of “traditional” Thanksgiving, where families harvested their own food, slaughtering the turkey, picking the potatoes, and milking the cranberries all by hand. The simplicity of nowadays buying all of these things at the local grocery store has shown a direct increase in the total amount of food consumed, as well as a decrease in the number of people that know how to properly milk a cranberry.
The Modern Spirit got into touch with Carol Baster, mother of one of the few families that still eats food besides what they have left over from Thanksgiving. Her views, while archaic, show an insight to a time of life where things were much more complicated, and meals had to be planned hours, if not a day in advance. “We have something different for dinner almost every day,” She said. “On Tuesday, my husband cooks dinner, which most of the time means ordering a pizza.” The Modern Spirit looked into this “pizza” that she mentioned, and found it is an ancient North American food comprised of cheese and tomato sauce spread over cooked dough. These families put a myriad of food on top of pizza (deemed “toppings”), however none of them are turkey, stuffing, or mashed potatoes.
It can be tough imagining a life where there is no breakfast turkey, turkey sandwiches for lunch, and turkey dinners. Looking into the diets of the past can be a truly enlightening experience, and give us a unique view into the hardships of life before we could eat for an entire year on Thanksgiving leftovers.