Song Of The Day 11/24/2015: Ray Davies – “Thanksgiving Day”

Forslagskasse: A Thanksgiving Lie – We didn't have Thanksgiving when I was growing up. We had Suggestion Box Day. It was very common in certain very small Scandinavian towns. From New Year's Day until the fourth Wednesday in November it was our responsibility to fill up Forslagskasse, a 4x4x4 wooden box lovingly handcrafted by a local carpenter in the late 1800's during the Langerhans Lemon Conflicts.

To ensure its safe delivery to our family this carpenter, whose name is lost to time and careless stewards of lore, had to disguise Forslagskasse as a stunted mule, running through the war-torn streets of Langerhans as lemon peels, kernels and insults were hurled at him from both directions. Surviving that barrage, the carpenter then had to contend with the winding, brick-laid streets of Langerhans, which were originally designed by an apothecary who was trying to pass himself off as a civil engineer. Finally the carpenter arrived at the house of my ancestors at Løgner Gate and knocked hastily on the door.

"Hi," he said to my great-great-great-grandfather, whose name is also lost to time, "I've brought you a mule."

"Ahhck, thanks," my great-great-great-grandfather would say. "Is it a mule of carriage, or a mule of discernment?"

This momentarily stumped the doltish carpenter, who by process of elimination said, "Discernment." He only said this because he'd just lumbered the mule, which I remind you was actually Forslagskasse the box, through the streets of town himself, so claiming it was a mule of carriage seemed like a hypocriticial idea. Maybe he wasn't so doltish after all.

"Aha! Discernment! So this mule will tell me of unforeseen tidal shifts that will affect our lunar observances?"

"Ja."

"This mule will foretell the future of our family bloodline, and identify in advance those progeny who will bear our family name most honorably and bring it to eminence?"

"Ja."

"Will this mule inform me in advance of treasonous barons who will attempt to thwart my family's ownership of lands?"

"....Ja. Ja, that sounds... Sure. Ja."

"In turn, will this mule inform me of potentially fortuitous schemes that might improve my own financial standings and turn untellable profits?"

"Ja."

"Will this mule finally help me and my wife achieve..."

"All right, you got me. This isn't a mule. This is a box I had to pass off as a mule to get through the lemon riots. I'm a carpenter. I don't know the first thing about mules. I apologize."

"Sir! Why sully the nobility of your profession with such a careless, poorly arrived-at ruse?"

"I got my reasons. We all have our inner demons. For Pete's sake, we live in total darkness for two months out of the year, you think dude isn't gonna develop a couple of weird complexes? Plus I'm not that bright."

"No matter. I'll take this box. I'll name it Forslagskasse."

"Ah, shoot, I was pulling for Kevin."

"My family will use it to place anonymous suggestions for the betterment of our lives from January through the fourth Wednesday of November. Then, every year at this time, to commemorate your fool's errand through the lemon-saturated but scurvy-free streets of Langerhans, we shall read the contents of Forslagskasse, consider the suggestions forthwith, discuss them at length and arrive at proposed courses of action. Then we shall hasten to the local printer shop and have these proposals spiral-bound and given proper title pages with effective, sans-serif fonts, possibly some beveling."

"That all sounds great, mister. Listen, could I get a tip from you? I have an abscessed foot."

But my great-great-great-grandfather had already whisked Forslagskasse inside, shut the door, and settled down to enjoy some dill straight off the twig while he figured out how to execute this whole deal.

To be continued, I guess.

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