Holiday Recipes Dictated by Kindergartners
Preheat your oven to 20 degrees and grab the turkey flavoring! Plus Charley Locke on intergenerational friendships, Caity Weaver talks to Flo, and Phil Klay on morality and war
My friend Jocelyn is an incredible teacher. Her room full of kindergartners are lucky to be in her care each day. And I am even luckier, because I get to hear all of her hilarious stories and benefit from the utter chaos that is an elementary school classroom without having to constantly catch their colds and viruses. It’s truly a dream situation.
This past week, to recognize the Thanksgiving traditions and festivities that her students had celebrated with their families, Jocelyn asked them to share with the class. But more than just share! Jocelyn had the kindergartners collectively dictate to her how they believe their favorite Thanksgiving dishes were made. She sent me the resulting cookbook and I have never seen a more hilarious and perfect work of culinary art in my life. I truly believe these recipes rival anything that Julia Child or Anthony Bourdain ever put out into the world, when it comes to pure food-based genius.
I have only removed details that would identify the kids or the school. Otherwise, here are the unedited recipes.
THANK YOU TO JOCELYN AND TO THE CHILDREN FOR THIS GENIUS! I expect to see all these dishes appear in the next season of The Bear.
My projects and upcoming events:
No more live events schedule in 2023 but you can always listen/watch to past shows!
PODCAST: How to Be a Better Human (TED/PRX) - We’re on a holiday break but Season 4 will start mid-January! In the meantime, you can listen to all the past episodes here (or wherever you get podcasts)
VIDEOS: Wrong Answers Only (LabX) - Watch all our previous episodes and live shows here
This week’s list
Longtime readers of Bright Spots know about my friendship with the hilarious and no nonsense champion swimmer Maurine “Mighty Mo” Kornfeld. This week, Mo turned 102 and we got to celebrate her at a big party with all her swim friends. In a perfect turn of events, my friend Charley Locke (not 102) published this excellent piece about the joys of intergenerational friendship. It’s not just an ode to the relationships, it’s also a very thoughtful guide on how to cultivate/navigate them. You should have more friends of all ages
P.S. For more on Mighty Mo, you can listen to me interview her for the podcast here
Caity Weaver is one of the best writers to ever tackle a celebrity profile. Every single one of her pieces makes me laugh, but this may be her greatest masterpiece. A profile of Flo from Progressive that’s also a passionate broadside against the injustice of not being allowed to order what she wants at lunch, it’s a joy to read from start to finish. Everybody Knows Flo From Progressive. Who Is Stephanie Courtney? (h/t Andrea Amiel)
“Phil Klay, as both a participant and a writer, has been thinking deeply about war for a long time… Klay has interrogated, to profound effect and with a deeply humane and moral sensibility, what war does to our hearts and minds, individually and collectively, here and abroad. ‘I’m interested in the kinds of stories that we tell ourselves about war,’ says Klay, who is a 40-year-old veteran of the Iraq war. ‘I’m interested in the uncomfortable ones, but also in the ones that feel too comfortable and need to be told alongside other types of stories that make it more troubling.’” I have been really struggling to find a way to put words to the horror of the war in Gaza (and the ongoing war in Ukraine). So much of what Klay says in this interview resonated with me, especially about the impossibility of a good war and the need to hold complexity and fight against turning human suffering into “ideological fodder.” Finding a Moral Center in This Era of War
I don’t have any answers, but the one tangible action I feel I can take is to contact my elected representatives and ask them to push for a just and lasting peace. For U.S. based readers, you can find your reps here.
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That's it for this week. Thanks for reading! Please share Bright Spots with anyone you think might enjoy it.
If you want, you can add chocolate syrup to the top,
This has been Bright Spots, a newsletter.
…wait, who are you?
I'm Chris Duffy, a comedian, TV writer, podcast host, and both a former fifth grade teacher and a former fifth grade student. I’m currently writing a nonfiction book about humor for Doubleday.