Thanksgiving in 3 Minutes

As we’re getting ready for this year’s Thanksgiving, I thought I’d share a little video we made of last year’s dinner with the Hamer family.

Happy (U.S.) Thanksgiving, folks. Tell us what you’re up to this year.


  1. You know, watching this video made me realize that, when you strip away all the trappings of the holiday, Thanksgiving really is just about sitting around a table and consuming too many calories. (Did you see that pie disappear?)

  2. Martin Willey says:

    That one guy really should not stand up and reach across the table. Where is is mother?

  3. That was wonderful John.

  4. Why is it that banjos and fiddles complement time lapse movies so well?

  5. John Hamer says:

    Many, many, many calories, Hunter (1). Even Great Grandma Hamer (upper center left) is making short work of that pie once it makes its appearance.

    Martin (2), if you mean my brother in the upper left corner, his mother (my mother too) is sitting right next to him in the red sweater. As a family, we’re not famous for our table manners; more like infamous.

    Thanks, Ann (3).

    Peter (4): I tried a whole bunch of music — everything from the soundtracks of It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World, to The Royal Tenenbaums, to Kill Bill. Banjos just worked best. BTW: That’s my Uncle Douglas playing.

  6. That’s my Uncle Douglas playing.

    Even better. 8)

  7. Kevin Barney says:

    Oh, John, I keep waiting for your coolness to reach some sort of ebb, but it never does; it just keeps spiraling out into the universe.

    We usually have the family over to our house for Thanksgiving. We prefer it that way so we don’t have to travel. Cooking the turkey is a small price to pay for that luxury.

    After dinner we sort of naturally evolve into three groups: Group A sits in the family room and watches football, group B remains in the kitchen and talks, and group C goes into the com;puter room, puts on some non-football TV or a movie, and surfs the net.

  8. That’s the speed my family eats Thanksgiving! Real time. Thanks. That was fun!

  9. Clay Whipkey says:

    Good stuff, John. Happy Thanksgiving, brother. Only a few hours away from this myself. I’m crossing my fingers that we don’t talk politics, but I’m thinking that is unlikely.

  10. We have no family near, so we go every year to some friends’ house and gather with others who have no family near – usually a total of about 40 people. We will be leaving in about an hour or so.

    This made me miss my family, but it was a good nostalgia. Thanks, John.

  11. Terry Foraker says:

    ERRRRPPPPP!!!! And I’m spent!

  12. That video is awesome. Thanks, John. Since you asked about what people are doing today: Kate’s with her mom this year, so Pete and I are hitting the road momentarily and will spend the long weekend at our favorite place in Palm Springs. Thanksgiving Dinner will be at the coolest retro supper club ever, which has a special menu today. Should be great.

    Happy Thanksgiving, everybody.

  13. Thanks, now I know what I’m missing out on here in Switzerland…

    I thought that might be Uncle Doug playing the background music. Is it from his “Back Porch Believer” album?

  14. Yeah, John- your coolness just spirals out into the universe. Awesome.

    I’m on strike this year, tapped-out, honestly, and my friends are coming over to cook in my kitchen. I am going to sit a the table a knit a pair of socks, while someone else does everything. I’m looking forward to it like no Thanksgiving ever!

  15. John Hamer says:

    SteveP (8): That’s not very far from the truth for us either. Mike has always been scandalized that we seem to consume the whole giant dinner on fast forward in real life too.

    Clay (9): In our family, we have a tradition of never talking about anything controversial when we’re in a group setting. Between that and the teetotalling, the Hamer family experience is very different from holidays with my in-laws.

    Thanks for sharing what you folks are doing. Kevin (7): I don’t think we have any fixed traditions like that after dinner, but I’ll wait and see and report back. One immediate difference with our experience: no one in our family watches football. Ray (10): Wow, 40 friends. That sounds like a great tradition! MikeInWeHo (12): Yay. I love the retro supper club experience.

    C.L. (13): Wish you folks were with us, sis. Yes, that’s the only album of Doug’s that I have.

    Tracy (14) and Kevin (7): Cool? Hmmmm… You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means…

  16. John Hamer says:

    Here’s my report so far. This year it was too much for Great Grandma Hamer to come to my parents’ house, so we all went to her nursing home and had an early Thanksgiving dinner there — the whole traditional fair. Now my mom is gearing up for another entire Thanksgiving dinner here. I was in Nauvoo last weekend and had a complete Thanksgiving dinner at the Community of Christ congregation there on Sunday. So this will be my 3rd complete Thanksgiving Dinner in 5 days, and 2nd just today. And we’re not even into leftover season yet.

  17. It all looks so efficient!

  18. Loved the body language: Everybody hunched over the table gobbling up the food then gradually all leaning back stuffed — until the pie came out and it started all over again.

    Thanks for that!

    A Thanksgiving-missing ex-pat who found her way to your site via Letters From A Broad.

  19. I absolutely loved this. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that your sister is one of my dear friends from BYU, or that I was raised listening to my dad play the banjo. Loved it.

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