Thanksgiving! Depending on your stance on gluttony and avicide, it’s the finest holiday on offer. Even if you see it as merely a warm-up for Christmas or a prequel to Black Friday, it is, at worst, the third or fourth-most wonderful time of the year. Will this year be a run-of-the-mill Turkey Day or will it be stamped with the indelible mark of Trump and parade fiascos? As you might expect, we have the odds.
Odds Trump doesn’t pardon a turkey: 8/1
Did Lavar Ball ruin it for everybody? The answer to that is always yes, regardless of context, but it may be doubly so when it comes to turkey pardoning. If you want this POTUS to do you a solid, you best mind your Ps and Qs and laud Trump at every turn. Was the turkey not convincingly enthusiastic about Trump’s “saw Brooke Shields at Studio 54 in 1987” story? Did the turkey’s mom wear a Colin Kaepernick jersey in 2015? All grounds for beheading.
Plus Obama pardoned turkeys too often, you know, and I’m not going to say we’re too soft on turkeys but we’re too soft on turkeys.
Odds a prominent Democrat makes the “you’re the REAL turkey” joke: 1/100
Odds a prominent Democrat tries to make a “Michael-Flynn-worked-for-the-Turkish-government-joke” on Twitter but doesn’t really pull it off: 5/1
The extra 140 characters was a mistake.
THE ABOMINATIONS WILL BE TELEVISED
Odds on Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade mishaps
Odds on the Thanksgiving NFL games
Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions
Seriously, his passer rating is 17 points higher this year than it was last year, and 11 points higher than his career average. There’s some dark magic at work in Minneapolis.
San Diego Chargers at Dallas Cowboys
Rivers is already at eight kids, and you know that he’s going to start at QB, himself. So he just needs two more for a full 11-person team. Yes, when you’re playing backyard football with Philip Rivers, you must field a full offensive line, especially when he’s playing quarterback. The man has taken enough hits over the years, and Jimmy from across the street is ferocious coming off the edge.
New York Giants at Washington
No coach has ever been fired in the middle of a game, at least not officially. While McAdoo has been awful this year, he can pin a lot of blame on injuries, which should keep him from being Guinness World Records fodder.
THE FRIENDS AND FAMILY PLAN
Odds you burn the turkey: 4/5
You’re gonna burn the turkey, but you shouldn’t feel bad about it. Thanksgiving dinner is like a preseason game for Christmas dinner, so don’t get in your own head for throwing a pick. It’s all about reps at this point.
Odds you get drunk: 1/4
A good parlay is “odds you burn the turkey” and “odds you get drunk,” because there’s no such thing as a sober guy who’s ordering Nando’s on Thanksgiving.
O/U time you fall asleep: 10:15 PM
Are you hosting or not? After Thanksgiving dinner, the guests go home and more or less immediately fall asleep, and the hosts tackle the leviathan task of cleaning a kitchen and dining room. The big metal pot you cooked the bird in is a nightmare, better let it soak until tomorrow. Or the next day. Actually, you’re probably not going to use it again until Christmas. Just fill it with soap and put it in the garage.
Odds your car breaks down on way to Thanksgiving dinner: 12/1
Your engine is fine, but you forgot to put snow tires on and you haven’t had the time to get the clutch replaced even though the service interval was like a thousand miles ago. You’re a careful driver though, right?
Odds you win the wishbone break: 16/1
Give this one to a kid. It’s tough to rig it in their favour, so there’s an outside shot you accidentally win. Don’t mess this up.
Most-likely food item to be forgotten in oven: pie
Turkey is the kneejerk reaction here, but an ancillary food item is much more likely. Turkey is what’s going to dominate your headspace, so leaving brussel sprouts or potatoes in the oven a little too long while you fret about carving the turkey seems like an inevitability. But pie takes the cake, so to speak. You’re just going to put it in for like 10 minutes to warm up after dinner. Then the tryptophan is going to kick in.
Side note: I once saw someone make a pumpkin pie with the little marshmallows on top, and put the whole affair in the oven to try for that golden-brown finish on top. The fire department came!
Odds the dog eats the turkey while no one is looking
Obviously, this depends a great deal on breed…
You need the height of a bigger dog to get to countertop level, and German Shepards are generally too well-behaved for this sort of thing. Looking at you, Labrador Retriever.
According to the foremost dog-behavior authority, dogsaholic.com, rottweilers and chow chows are two of the worst-behaved breeds. They’re liable to take what they feel is theirs by right.
If you’re the type to table the turkey before people sit down, the smaller breeds will have their chance to go floor-to-chair-to-table, but I have it on good authority that chihuahua’s will abstain unless there’s mole sauce on the side.
Odds an elderly family member makes an outrageously politically-incorrect remark: 2/3
That’s just kind of an inevitability. My mother is coming up on sixty and struggling with the concept of non-binary sexuality and gender. It’s a hoot!
Emergency service most-likely to be called to your house
Fire department leads, with ambulance a close second. Police seems like a bit of a reach, people don’t call the cops on family, do they?
Odds your family gets in an argument: 4/1
I think people overstate this. Your family is your family, loved ones that you might not see very often, and you know how to walk on these particular eggshells. When grandpa starts talking about “the immigrants” that moved in next door, you’re going to let it slide and subtly steer the conversation back to, what’s an uncontroversial topic, football? No, too much Colin Kaepernick. The weather? No, too much climate change. Cancer? Yes, there we go. We can all agree on cancer being terrible.
Odds on what your family is most-likely to argue about
Trump is like 30% of the American cultural zeitgeist, and he’ll try to insert himself into any of these other polemics. The NFL is already a Trump debate with instant replays; sports rivalries you never cared about (UCLA basketball?) are now a Trump debate; apple pie vs. pumpkin is likely to become a Trump debate, somehow.
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