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9 things to talk about at Thanksgiving that don’t involve politics

Trying to avoid WWIII at the Thanksgiving dinner table? Talk about these topics instead of politics. (Pexels.)

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and for some, this might be the first time you’re seeing family members and friends in a long time.

So, that means there will be plenty to catch up on.

But since the world is so polarizing and we don’t always agree with our family members about politics, the state of the pandemic, and now, vaccines, you may need a few prompts to keep the conversation light and flowing.

While a healthy debate is always nice, this year has been a lot. If you don’t want World War III to erupt in your home, try bringing up these topics, which certainly involve current events, but have way lower stakes than topics like the 2020 election or the ongoing pandemic.


1. ‘Dune’

There were probably hundreds of memes made about “Dune,” but it actually turned out to be a pretty great movie that lived up to the hype. And now, you can chat about if the remake was better than the original or vice versa. The best part is that if anyone at your Thanksgiving table hasn’t seen it, you can just stream it on someone’s HBO Max account once dinner is over.

2. Ariana Grande on ‘The Voice’

Look, this is a hot take, but “The Voice” would feel more like an event if there were only one season a year, but because the show does two, it’s hard to keep up with the contestants, winners and, most importantly, the coaches.

But when “The Voice” has Kelly Clarkson, and now, Ariana Grande, the show finally feels fresh and exciting again.

Grande has been so fun to watch this season, so why not see if others who tune in agree with you?

3. The guy who was on ‘Jeopardy!’ for a really long time

OK, how cool was that?

It seems to be every 10 years or so there is a “Jeopardy!” contestant who captivates viewers with their win streaks, and that just happened with Matt Amodio.

When he hit the month mark on his win streak, it felt like an event every night watching the show.

It was such a feel-good story, so why not ask your relatives if they were as excited about it as you were?

4. Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson

It was the “holding hands saw ‘round the world” when Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson were photographed locking hands while on a ride at an amusement park. I know that I have a million questions, so there has to be someone at your Thanksgiving dinner who s equally as confused, intrigued and bewildered by this news.

5. Billionaires in space

Of the many strange things that happened this year, nothing was stranger than when a couple of billionaires decided they wanted to use their endless riches to launch themselves into space.

Maybe everyone at the table can come up with a list of better things they could have spent their money on?

6. Drew Barrymore’s talk show

It seems that Kelly Clarkson has replaced Ellen as the queen of daytime TV, but that doesn’t mean there can’t be room for more.

Drew Barrymore has had a talk show for a year now, and it seems to be going pretty well. She’s wacky, kind of nutty and super lovable. Find out from the table if everyone else loves her, or if they’re hanging with Ellen till the end.

7. ‘Succession’

It’s finally back! After being off the air for more than two years because of the pandemic, HBO’s “Succession” is a few weeks into its third season, and people have opinions.

If people at your Thanksgiving table haven’t seen the show yet, this is the perfect opportunity to tell them about it, and then watch the pilot episode after dinner.

8. Will the Detroit Lions win a game this season?

Football is always a great conversation starter -- and it’ll be on TV of course -- and no team has had a worse season this year than the Detroit Lions.

If you live in or near Michigan, you will for sure have opinions on the state of the team, but most NFL fans feel some type of way with what is going on with the Lions.

Do they need another new head coach? Should the team be sold? What should come next?

9. Another Olympics is in like, 3 months.

It’s bad enough that the last two years feel like they barely happened, but now we’ve got the Winter Olympics coming up just mere months after the pushed back Summer Olympics went down.

The Olympics are always fun and a spectacle, but two during a global pandemic? That will be fun to discuss.

Bonus: Whether it’s a bones day.

If you’re like me and addicted to TikTok, you know if it’s a bones day or not. But for the uneducated, let me enlighten you: There is a guy on the app named Jonathan Graziano who has a 13-year-old pug named Noodle.

This pug has lived quite a long life, and doesn’t always feel up to moving around.

Every day on TikTok, Graziano will prop Noodle up and see if he’s going to use his bones. If he stays upright, it’s a bones day. If Noodle flops to the ground, it’s no-bones day. It’s like Groundhog Day, when we wait to see if the groundhog can see its shadow and we plan accordingly.

You can show your family some videos of Noodle and get them invested on checking if its going to be a bones or a no-bones day.


About the Author:

Jack is a Digital Content Editor with a degree in creative writing and French from Western Michigan University. He specializes in writing about movies, food and the latest TV shows.