328 • American soap

328 • American soap

Please note that your strumpet, Cecile,
Is barred from our Thanksgiving meal.
She gets your dear father
Worked up in a lather:
Myself, I don’t see the appeal.

The tiny fault-lines that extended families ignore for most of the working year can suddenly broaden into ravines of foreboding as Thanksgiving looms, and the tribe prepares to converge on the parental ranch. This mother’s note – deploring the husband’s lecherous preoccupation with their son’s voluptuous consort – betrays the tragic depths of her jealous insecurity. ‘Book yourself a makeover, Mom!’ comes the reply. ‘It’s not as though you’re strapped for cash.’  

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