What does American Thanksgiving mean to you?
I bet it’s about turkey and football, and family, of course, for many people.
But mention “American Thanksgiving” to me and an ear worm in the form of Arlo Guthrie starts singing his famous song, the Alice’s Restaurant Massacree.
You know how it goes: “You can get anything you want/at Alice’s Restaurant.”
Oh, yah, then there’s this: “I’m sittin’ here on the Group W bench ’cause you want to know if I’m moral enough to join the Army — burn women, kids, houses and villages — after bein’ a litterbug.”
As Wikipedia says: “The song is one of Guthrie’s most prominent works, based on a true incident from his life that began on Thanksgiving Day 1965 with a citation for littering, and ended with the refusal of the U.S. Army to draft him because of his conviction for that crime.”
Hey, there’s a great lesson there on how to avoid the draft . . .
They even made a movie based on the song, which you can watch here if you find yourself with time to kill on Thanksgiving Day.
However you may be spending it, I wish all my American friends and readers a Happy Thanksgiving — and be careful where you dump the garbage afterward, huh?
Photo credit: Street including sign for former Alice’s Restaurant, Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA. (Source: Dtobias/Wikimedia Commons)
Last year, or the year before, for the 50th Anniversary of the song, Arlo said he really only sings the song when he goes on tour for these anniversaries, every 10 years or so. It’s just so damn long. He has to re-learn the words, too!
He’s still in a Woodstock foggy state of mind, no doubt . . .