I’m not sure when the Wednesday before Thanksgiving became a holiday. Black Wednesday. Maybe it still isn’t, or at least not officially. It’s uncertain whether everyone celebrates this occasion or non-occasion depending on how you look at it. No gifts are exchanged and there’s no historical significance, and the excess of alcohol generally ruins Thanksgiving…though a certain charm remains.
No other holiday is as relentlessly fueled by hooch. On paper it appears a crutch, propping up an otherwise ordinary Wednesday. As the agreeable haze of four pints settles in something else becomes apparent. The elixir is as satisfying as ever, but Black Wednesday primarily serves as the venue for earnest and carefree time spent with friends new and old. It’s a reminder that some things never change and your family is bigger than you thought it was.
The drink flows seemlessly as do dust ridden stories and memories. Everything relevant becomes irrelevant, things have changed but they haven’t. Nonsense, laughter and cigarette smoke soak into wooden rafters of the old bar. They join last year’s and the year before that. In a way the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving is a yellowing picture, a time capsule full of cherished artifacts. That city, that time that was left behind is unearthed, to be drank in once more.