I spent Thanksgiving with Meli's family and some of their family friends: two affable southern doctors, their 93-year-old mother, one of their wives and two of their children. The older doctor was very, very similar to Our President in the looks and mannerisms department, as well as the foreign policy department. At one point he was shuffling behind me to get a drink or something and all of a sudden his hands were on my shoulders. I thought he was just steadying himself to pass, but then he said, "Hang on, Matt. Let me check something here." Then he started pulling at my collar. My initial thoughts of "tag sticking out?" and "pass?" almost immediately turned to "mole!" as I realized he was taking a look at the black, irregular mole on the back of my neck that has been bothering doctors for at least ten years.
After some poking and scrutinizing he called over his brother, the other doctor (a plastic surgeon) to give a second opinion and the consensus was that I should have it removed right away, even though it isn't causing any trouble now. They were so adamant both about how important it was to get it taken off and how quick and easy it would be for any dermatologist or plastic surgeon to do that I half expected the younger one to grab a carving knife and tell me to hold still. Fortunately I held them off with a guarantee that I would add it to my January List, along with "get up every day at 6:00 a.m. and go to the gym," "visit Jelly Belly factory," and "re-introduce alcohol to body after two-and-a-half-month post-bachelor party recovery period." So if anyone wants to get one last look at my mole, now's the time to do it.
Another highlight of the Thanksgiving visit was watching the two existing Elliott cats interact with the new kitten. You haven't seen impotence until you've seen an angry, obese, declawed cat vainly hissing and swatting at an energetic and fully equipped kitten from on top of a chair. Even more fun was watching the kitten stalk and pounce on the other, older cat, who reacted less violently but still wasn't doing anything to make the kitten feel at all welcome. It was like a feline version of Dennis the Menace and Mr. Wilson.