Premier League 2012, Week 13 Preview And Fixtures: The Weekend's Games As Thanksgiving Leftovers

Vittorio Zunino Celotto

Seeing as how I am an American and it is the second-to-last Friday of November, I am in (more of a) food-induced haze than normal. That makes it difficult to think about anything for too terribly long without my mind drifting to the quickly-spoiling but once-upon-a-time-oh-so-delicious food consuming 95% of the space in my refrigerator. But you know what they say; when life gives you gravy, make gravy-aid!

Sunderland vs. West Bromwich Albion

Saturday, 12:45 GMT/7:45 AM ET; Stadium of Light

Applicable Leftover: Cheese-And-Crackers Platter

There's really no part of Thanksgiving Day that's better/worse (depending on how one feels about their family) than the hour or so between everyone arriving and the meal being served. And despite the fact that every single person in the house is going to consume somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 calories once dinnertime rolls around, there's always a cheese-and-crackers platter lying around, but no one eats too much of it because everyone likes to at least pretend they have something approach self control. And since the consumption of leftovers is basically Thanksgiving Day in miniature, the humble platter serves largely the same purpose; it's fine, something nice to whet ones appetite, but it's an afterthought compared to what comes next.

Pick: Draw, 1-1

Everton vs. Norwich City

Saturday, 15:00 GMT/10:00 AM ET; Goodison Park

Applicable Leftover: Green Bean Casserole

Green bean casserole is one of the many dishes that almost no one eats on any day other than Thanksgiving, but unlike some of its more beloved brethren it is most decidedly not everyone's cup of cream of mushroom soup. There are those that like it, a few even that love it, but many more that will ignore it entirely. Green bean casserole is never going to be bad to those that enjoy it, but its quality as a leftover can vary wildly. Sometimes it's the first thing into the compost bin, but on some blessed occasions it seems to get even better the next day. Those rare times are pleasant surprises.

Pick: Everton, 2-0

Manchester United vs. Queens Park Rangers

Saturday, 15:00 GMT/10:00 AM ET; Old Trafford

Applicable Leftover: Candied Yams

No one is 50/50 on candied yams; you either love candied yams to death, or you can't wait to tell everyone on earth how much you hate them. For some, opening the refrigerator the next day and seeing them staring back at you will inspire near euphoric gee; for others, something approaching rage.

Pick: United, 3-1

Stoke City vs. Fulham

Saturday, 15:00 GMT/10:00 AM ET; Britannia Stadium

Applicable Leftover: Ambrosia Salad

The only person that likes this abomination is your cranky, 62-year-old uncle. He demands it be at every family gathering, and talks about how much better and more simple food was in his day. Everyone else gets slightly queasy looking at it, and no one else takes any of it home because it is awful.

Pick: Draw, 1-1

Wigan Athletic vs. Reading

Saturday, 15:00 GMT/10:00 AM ET; DW Stadium

Applicable Leftover: Roasted Brussels Sprouts

A lot of people see these sitting on the table, and they turn up their nose and proceed to the next plate. That's just fine with you; their ill-informed, pre-conceived notions are how you end up taking containers-full of these bad-boys home, and laughing at the suckers as you make a return trip to Deliciousville.

Pick: Wigan, 2-1

Aston Villa vs. Arsenal

Saturday, 17:30 GMT/12:30 PM ET; Villa Park

Applicable Leftover: Mashed Potatoes

Good lord, what happened to these? I swear they were delicious, just yesterday. They were amazing! You remember, right? I'm not crazy, right? How did this happen? Well, shoot. Maybe if I put enough gravy on-what do you mean there's no gravy? You let Uncle Martin take all of the gravy? Oh for Pete's sake.

Pick: Arsenal, 2-1

Swansea City vs. Liverpool

Sunday, 13:30 GMT/8:30 AM ET; Liberty Stadium

Applicable Leftover: Cranberry Sauce (Canned)

Man, remember when Aunt Helen made fresh cranberry sauce, with just enough sugar so that it was still nice and tart, and a dash of nutmeg? And she'd bring it to the table, still nice and warm and zest some orange peel into it? This stuff just isn't the same. I miss Aunt Helen :(

Pick: Draw, 1-1

Southampton vs. Newcastle United

Sunday, 15:00 GMT/10:00 AM ET; St. Mary's Stadium

Applicable Leftover: Pumpkin Pie

You know it's not good for you, and you know it tasted way better yesterday, but dammit, it's there and you're gonna eat it. And then you're gonna feel just terrible.

Pick: Newcastle, 2-1

Chelsea vs. Manchester City

Sunday, 16:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET; Stamford Bridge

Applicable Leftover: Turkey Sandwich on Day-Old Dinner Roll

This is the only thing anyone really looks forward to when leftovers are concerned. I mean, sure, it's all enjoyable, or otherwise you wouldn't be eating it again. But this is the main event, and it's pretty hard to ever see it disappointing.

Pick: City, 3-2

Tottenham Hotspur vs. West Ham United

Sunday, 16:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET; White Hart Lane

Applicable Leftover: Gravy

Sam_allardyce_airport_medium

via Wikimedia Commons.

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