Tips and tricks for getting out of a Thanksgiving fiasco


Gwendolynne Royle

When the arguments get heated, don’t forget to be thankful and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Gwendolynne Royle, Opinions Editor

Thanksgiving can be a time of dread for families around the country. No argument compares to the arguments had on Thanksgiving, whether it be about politics or who should have won “The Masked Singer,” things tend to get heated.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to disagreements about the holiday season. We all know the dread of sitting down with your extended family three weeks after the election. In that situation you become one of two people: the hider or the fighter.

I tend to be a hider. Either my cousin and I will retreat to my room and gossip, or I will silently eat my potatoes and avoid eye contact.

My mother, on the other hand, is a fighter. Once we get a few platefuls in, all bets are off. My mom and her sister can go back and forth for hours—honestly, sometimes it’s impressive.

Of course this year is a bit different as we won’t be able to see a lot of our families, but Thanksgiving has a gift for starting arguments in big and small groups of people. Here is my list of Thanksgiving dinner tips and tricks for the most argumentative families:

1. The dramatic chair-fall

A classic: when the conversation is getting a little too heated for your liking and you sense your Uncle Jimmy is about to say something super offensive, just fall out of your chair. It’s a show stopper. Everyone will either go to help you or they will sit there and laugh, but it will always lighten the mood.

2. The conversation starter

Picture this: Your grandma is about to start attacking your mom for her cooking when she says something about how her mother used to make the food. She has provided you with the perfect conversation starter. Ask her about her mother and her life as a child; that way, she gets to talk about herself and your mom gets a few more minutes of peace.

3. The “pass the plate”

Be careful with this one; if you use it too much,you’ll be deemed rude. When the argument is starting, back up, tap one of the people who is fighting and ask them to pass the green beans. This will throw them off track long enough for you to switch the topic to something more fun, like new movies or just about anything else for that matter.

4. The “get groovy”

I often use this one, and not just at Thanksgiving dinner. When the conversation begins to sour, get up and show your family the newest dance you have learned on Tiktok. There is nothing like dancing to “Corvette corvette” in order to distract your family.

5. The sigh

Fair warning—this one may only work if you are the baby of the family. If you don’t want to listen to your dad and brother argue over whether climate change is real or not, just start sighing really loud. In no time at all they will start to feel bad and then you can talk about whatever you want— you are in control.

6. The bomb drop

This final trick is not to be used lightly; only use it in the most dire of situations. Totally make up a piece of life changing news to yell out dramatically. I guarantee that if you tell your family you started dating someone named Spike and are getting matching face tattoos, they’ll be quiet for a few minutes.

I hope that this list will help you squeeze your way out of unnecessary conflict this Thanksgiving. Remember to stay safe and have a wonderful Thanksgiving break.