The Traditions of Thanksgivukkah With Moshe Kasher

By Staff

<p>What's the deal with Thanksgivukkah? How do you celebrate it? Comedian Moshe Kasher examines the once in a lifetime convergence of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah.</p>

This Thursday, November 28, is a once-in-a-thousand-lifetimes occurrence: Thanksgiving and Hanukkah fall on the same day. Although Thanksgiving is always the fourth Thursday of November, Hanukkah moves around as it’s determined by the Jewish calendar (which can have between 353 and 385 days per year), and the last time these two holidays did the mashed potato was back in 1888 (the same year as the Great Blizzard of ’88). Their next big date? That will be circa year 81,055—79,043 years from now.

The rare calendar coincidence is inspiring the creation of a new hybrid holiday: Thanksgivukkah.

In anticipation of this remarkable fête, the Internet has lit up with ideas about how to celebrate the fusion holiday by combining traditions from both festivities: think turkey dreidels, yam latkes, gelt chocolate coins stamped with “Gobble Tov,” a dreidel balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and, our favorite, the turkey-shaped menorah, aka the Menurkey.

Actor, comedian and author Moshe Kasher weighs in on the awesomesauce that is Thanksgivukkah 2013.

Look. Holidays are stressful. And, unlike the poor kid whose birthday fell on Christmas and had to resign himself to one set of crappy presents delivered by that fat pervert, Santa Claus, as adults we actually get excited by the idea of only having to celebrate once.

Also, and I genuinely believe this, people are thrilled by the opportunity to smush words together to make a new one. For example, when I’ve been telling people about this interview with Playboy, I’ve been referring to it as my “Playboynterview.” Try it; it’s fun!

I think that an oil-based holiday (like Hanukkah) goes well with a food-based holiday (like Thanksgiving). Also, both holidays are based on the idea of getting a great deal: on Hanukkah we got seven days of light from one day’s worth of oil, and on Thanksgiving we got an entire continent simply by tricking the people who were already there into thinking we had come in peace!

The Menurkey: A lot of people might have seen the Menurkey Kickstarter, where a family raised almost $50,000 in donations in order to fund a for-profit turkey menorah business, as less than “in the holiday spirit,” but I can see no truer representation of giving thanks than stacking fat wads of cash. Much as the Wu-Tang Clan once said,“Cash Rules Everything Around Me.” Respect.

The Thanksgiving Parade Dreidel Balloon: A dreidel in the Thanksgiving Day Parade is exactly the thing we all need to pave a path of respect between the Jewish community and the pilgrim community. That great inflated spinning top of love and joy will land on the symbol for America: $.

Thanksgiving Football and Black Friday: Black Friday is racist. We do not need a specific Friday to honor our African-American brothers and sisters. Every Friday should be a Rainbow Friday for all races to join, arm-in-arm, in that great representation of American freedom: trampling scores of elderly people in order to get a discounted flatscreen television. That is what I call “Taking Thanks.” Fuck all this giving shit. It’s time to grab that shit. Don’t like it? I don’t givukkah.

My ironic Thanksgivukkah tradition would be to retroactively honor all the treaties we made and broke with the Native Americans. And, barring that, a latke-crust pumpkin pie.

Moshe Kasher. Comedian. Child genius. Jew. Jew comedian. OB-GYN. Pleasure center. Good tipper. Guiding light. Beefcake. He lives alone in L.A. He is a writer on NBC’s The New Normal, the cohost of The Champs podcast and the author of the acclaimed memoir Kasher in the Rye from Grand Central Publishing. Please, go to Netflix and watch his comedy special Moshe Kasher Live In Oakland. Please, read his book. Please, think of the children.


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