Alone on Thanksgiving

todayDecember 7, 2022 24

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It’s Thanksgiving morning. I’m sitting alone in my four-bedroom apartment, not a soul in sight. Pretty sad, huh? Only 19 years old, already spending the holidays by myself 500 miles away from home.

It’s okay though. I’m doing my best Thanksgiving impression, minus the family part. I’m still glued to the couch watching football. I do that every year, just ask my mom. I’m making myself a nice four-course meal too. Sure, it’s no home cooking, but instant mashed potatoes and a slightly undercooked pumpkin pie do the trick. Target was out of sparkling apple cider, so orange juice it is! 

This is what I always dreamed of as a kid: no parents, no dishes to clean, and all the junk food I could ever dream of. But now, on my first Thanksgiving away from home, the holiday memories from my childhood bring a tear to my eye. Eh, I’m just kidding. I’ll be home in two weeks for Christmas break anyway. My sister says she ‘barely misses me,’ but I know it’s just because she doesn’t have to share the car anymore. Plus, I FaceTimed my parents. They couldn’t figure out how to point the camera at their faces, but it was nice nonetheless. 

I didn’t stay here because I hate my family, but because I have an opportunity I can’t pass up. Tomorrow, I get paid to travel to a football game, more specifically the Nebraska vs. Iowa season finale. So Joseph, you may ask, you’re skipping Thanksgiving to go to Iowa? Well… it doesn’t sound very enticing when you put it like that. 

This is exactly why I came to college, though. It’s my dream to travel the country covering sports. Iowa isn’t exactly a luxurious start, but it is a start. I’m a sports editor for the school newspaper, or student-run publication as we like to call it, and a football beat writer. It’s been a rough season, to say the least— Nebraska has played laughably bad football — but it’s also been the best year of my life. Watching the games from the press box is incredible, not to mention the delectable spread of food they give us pre-game. 

I crave experiences like this because it will help me secure my dream job someday. Sure, that might involve skipping Thanksgiving to cover a 3-8 football team. But the Pillsbury biscuits and canned cranberry sauce taste the same on a plastic plate as they do on a seasonally decorated dining room table surrounded by people I love. 


Written by: Joseph Maier

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