My family is far from holiday-oriented, but every year, Thanksgiving is routine. Pillsbury cinnamon rolls are the only way we have ever started off the morning. The heat of the oven will combine with the hissing steam of the radiators and the smell of cinnamon and sugar will permeate the walls, from the kitchen to the living room to my bedroom. "Getting ready for the day" will consist of showering and changing from a pair of pajamas to a pair of...sweatpants and a T-shirt. My family has never really believed in putting on the pearls to eat food in one's own home. By the time I reach the bottom of the stairs, the television will already be turned on. We are not a family who eats their meals around the television, Thanksgiving is a special occasion. Never in my life have I missed the annual airing of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. I will watch the entire show, from the high school marching bands, to the Radio City Rockettes, to the enormous balloons, to the floats, to the very end, right before the credits roll, when Santa and Mrs. Clause arrive in their sleigh. I'll call to my mother, who will seem chained to the stove until we've sat down and begun to mang', when a particularly impressive Broadway show number is featured and, of course, when the Rockettes move into the formation that announces their famous high kicks. Call me 5 years old, but I love the parade. I love the colors and streamers and sparkles and hats and coats. I've never attended the parade in person, but not every child gets to go to Disneyland, right? Maybe someday. Immediately after the parade airs, the film A Christmas Story will come on (same channel!) and yes, I will watch it because it is a classic and because it gives me my yearly dose of gun-handling tips and techniques ("You'll shoot your eye out!"). The rest of the day will pass in a blur of delicious smells and tastes. Inevitable. I will fall asleep happy and full. Inevitable. I will talk to my parents for hours and hours, and remember the perks of being an only child in an incredibly real family. Inevitable.