When you aim that last, gasping dribble of aerosol whipped cream at your third helping of pumpkin pie today, retired Air Force Gen. Curtis E. LeMay will probably be popping a bite of bourbon-laced mincemeat in his mouth or taking a hard puff on his pipe.
And while you're playing cards with family or friends, Thomas Kemp--brother of presidential hopeful Jack Kemp--might just be sprawled on his living room floor, helping his son-in-law win a Scrabble battle with his mother-in-law.
Surprised? You shouldn't be. A pre-holiday survey of some of Orange County's movers and shakers revealed that on Thanksgiving Day they follow much the same agenda that everyone else follows: Unite the family for turkey and the trimmings, watch football and indulge in the simple pleasure of talking to each other.
For your holiday enjoyment, then, a glimpse of your on-the-move neighbors' Thanksgiving celebrations:
Virginia Knott Bender, co-owner of Knott's Berry Farm: "We'll be in Palm Desert this year, having dinner with our dear friends Lon and Mary Ann Wells and my sister Marion Montapert and her husband Tony. We'll go to their club. When mother and dad were alive, we always worked on Thanksgiving, so we had our celebration the day before. We'll be doing that this year, too. All of our family will gather in the Knott's Berry Farm Steak House for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner--turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, biscuits, boysenberry jam. We're going to celebrate the day after Thanksgiving, too. We're having friends over that we know will be in the desert--Mary and Jim Roosevelt and others. We'll have chicken crepes and some side dishes as well as pumpkin, mincemeat and pecan pie."
Bob Fluor, vice president corporate relations, the Fluor Corp.: "Martha and I will get out the old red holiday table cover and have a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with the family--our five children, my mother, Lillian, Martha's mother, Jackie, and some special guests. Martha will be the turkey-and-dressing lady. Mother will bring her green beans almondine, made the way she's always made them with hollandaise sauce. I always have two helpings. We'll all watch football, engage in family chitchat. Take lots of pictures. This year it's important for us to have a traditional dinner. We have a guest coming from London. I'll carve."
Roberta Jenkins, real estate developer and co-founder of the Educational Foundation for Black Americans: "I'm going to be cooking dinner for 40 family and friends. Since (husband) Matt and I spend Christmas away (from their Fullerton home) skiing, Thanksgiving is the biggest holiday of the year for us. My son, Dexter, will be home from college, and we'll have nieces, nephews and friends over. Since we go all out for Thanksgiving, I'll have to start cooking (two days ahead). I plan to have turkey, roast pork, sweet potatoes and greens. I think it's the best day of the year."
Ruth Ann Moriarty, daughter of Segerstrom family matriarch, Ruth Segerstrom: "We usually have the family over to our house in Santa Ana for Thanksgiving. But this year mother said it was just too much work for me. So she's taking us all--me, my husband, Eugene, my brother, Henry, and his wife, Renee, and all of our children and grandchildren--to the new Ambrosia Restaurant in Costa Mesa. We'll meet at the restaurant and just visit. That's it! We're just a normal family. Mother loves to have us all together. She's very family oriented."
Helen LeMay, wife of retired Gen. Curtis E. LeMay: "We'll be in Irvine visiting our daughter, Jane, and her husband, Dr. James Lodge. I'll bring the homemade pies--squeeze them tight to get all the calories out. I'm making a butter pecan and mincemeat with bourbon. Curtis says we don't dare ever invite anyone from Alcoholics Anonymous to my dinners. I put so much alcohol into my cooking! Sherry in the gravy, bourbon in the pies. After dinner we'll just talk. That's really all we want to do, since we never get to see each other. We're all so busy. The general will have little bites of each pie. He's trying to reduce. But I think all of those little bites add up to just as many calories, don't you? He'll also enjoy his pipe after dinner."