Finally, it’s that time of year again. The turkey is done in the oven. Dressing, macaroni and cheese, collard greens, deviled eggs, candied yams and a seemingly endless array of other side dishes line the table. Our families are all gathered around the table, preparing to say grace and to devour the meal in front of them right before slipping into a food coma for the rest of the night.

That’s right: it’s Thanksgiving, a holiday dedicated to expressing gratitude and sharing plates, stories and space with family. This year will look — or at least it should — quite different for most families. The pandemic is still spiraling out of control, meaning that many celebrations won’t be held in the same room, but instead, will be held through video call.

On the surface, this sounds awful. After all, Thanksgiving is defined by seeing family members, but there are certainly some upsides to having a celebration over Zoom instead of in one uniform location.

For starters, I don’t know about you but I’ve tacked on some weight during quarantine. A pound here, a pound there -- nothing major. But around family members I haven’t seen in a while? It’d be the front page story. I’ll never forget when I first came home from college and the first thing my aunt said to me, before “hi,” or “how are you,”  was, “I guess the freshman fifteen is real, haha!” 

This year, though, you don’t have to worry about that. You can eat as much as you want, unbuckle your fly and give your stomach room to breath, in peace. If a family member asks you if you gained weight over Zoom, even if they’re correct, you can just say, “Nah. It’s just the camera angle.” 

Trust me, it’ll work every time.

With less family members in the house, there are less dishes to prepare. If you’re sitting in your home, it’ll be easier now than ever to clean up, saving you precious time before you fall asleep instead of washing the dishes of 20 distant cousins. That opportunity to save water is good for the environment and your water bill.

It’s also important to remember that over Zoom, you decide how long the dinner is– for you at least. If you have a family that likes to talk far after the last bite, but you typically want to move onto something else, simply do that. There has never been a better time for the internet connection to go out or for the call to drop.

I’m kidding, I’m kidding. 

All jokes aside, the most important reason to be thankful for a Thanksgiving dinner over Zoom is that it’s the greatest way to show gratitude for your family by keeping them safe. With cross-country traveling, close-nit living room spaces and many dinners containing over 10 people, it’s the prime place for COVID-19 to spread.

Countless families across the world have been torn apart by COVID. They’ve lost family members to either hospitalization or death and won’t be able to celebrate with them this year. Out of respect for those families and love for those dearest to us, we should do everything in our power to keep as many families as safe as possible.

When the last great pandemic came in the 1920s, they didn’t have video calls. If you weren’t at the table they couldn’t see you. Let’s be thankful that this year, regardless of if we’re apart, we can still meet one another, albeit virtually.

Adonis Fryer is a sophomore studying communications at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Do you agree? Tell Adonis by emailing him at af414219@ohio.edu.