My Lord of the Rings Thanksgivings (AKA Thoughts on Holiday Traditions)

“Once again, we come to the Holiday Season, a deeply religious time that each of us observes, in his own way, by going to the mall of his choice.”

 –  Dave Barry


If you want to make one of my friends laugh, tell them I’m not a person of tradition.

Seriously, you’ll have them on the floor.

Okay, so I’m a bit of a traditional guy. And not just in your usual “we HAVE to get out Christmas decorations this year or I’m calling social services” kind of way. I mean with everything. I have a set of activities I do on the first day of school, the last day of school, the first night of summer, the last night of summer, etc. I wear the same shirt on the first and last days of the school year.

I think this is partly because I remember dates so well. I remember the exact date of almost every time I’ve seen a movie with my friends, every party I’ve been to since sixth grade, every first and last day of school for the past five years, and other general fun outings I’ve had.

So, naturally, I also remember everything that happened on holidays.

And thus, when things like Thanksgiving break roll around, I repeat the same general set of activities.

My Thanksgiving traditions were laid down in eighth grade, when I spent the night before Thanksgiving watching the movie X-Men: The Last Stand on FX. I’d seen the movie for the first time on a bus to summer camp between sixth and seventh grade, so it had been a while since I’d last watched it. But I watched it again.

Then I went up to my grandparents’, got home that Saturday, and did my entire science fair project while watching the TV marathon of all three Lord of the Rings movies back to back.

Which takes nine hours and eighteen minutes, mind you.

(As a side note, had I watched all three extended versions instead, the running time would’ve bumped up to eleven hours and twenty-two minutes).

Anyway. So that formed my annual traditions: each Thanksgiving break from then on, I’ve watched X-Men: The Last Stand on Wednesday night, then spent the rest of the weekend procrastinating homework.

As for Lord of the Rings, I usually watch it on Wednesday morning when I first wake up. Not the whole thing—I’m not THAT strict on tradition—but usually the snippet where Frodo meets Aragorn, and then where he and Sam climb Mount Doom.

All that being said, I turned on my TV last night to put in my DVD of X-Men. As I was getting it out, the TV Guide listings scrolled by. Then my jaw dropped.

X-Men: The Last Stand was playing on TV. The night before Thanksgiving. The same night I watched it in eighth grade.

On the same channel as in eighth grade.

At the same time slot as in eighth grade.


All I can say is that there’d better not be a Lord of the Rings marathon on TV Saturday. If my mind gets blown to bits, I can’t do my homework for Monday.

So thus were my traditions this year. Along with watching this genius dub…all credit to Brock’s Dubs.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!