Things that are OK to spar over, as listed by CNN, include: How to cook the turkey, roast, grill or deep-fry?
Thankfully, the internet has stepped up with a host of tips for taking the peril out of the occasion -- starting with a list of arguments to divert from an unwanted foray into politics.
Things that are OK to spar over, as listed by CNN, include: How to cook the turkey, roast, grill or deep-fry? And the stuffing, inside the bird or on the side? Cranberry sauce, canned or freshly made? What to do before you eat -- crash out in front of the TV or build your appetite with a walk?
The Atlantic offers a similar list of -- disputed -- Thanksgiving-themed statements to be rolled out in an emergency: Pie is better than cake, pecan pie is better than pumpkin, apple pie is better than pecan, etc etc.
Etiquette expert Daniel Post Senning offered CNN the following advice on keeping things civil at Thanksgiving: stick to non-threatening topics -- think weather, sport, kids -- do your best to keep an open mind, and if things start to take a nasty turn, don't take the bait.
The subject at hand is no trivial matter: according to an online poll by ABC News and SSRS, 45 percent of Americans expect a side of politics with their turkey this year -- and 38 percent are stressed by the prospect.
One woman from Arlington, Virginia, who asked not to be identified lest her in-laws see the article on Facebook, said her therapist had advised her to plan "exit ramps" if holiday conversations turn ugly.
"I brought my adult coloring books, Christmas cards to address and plenty of reading material," the woman told AFP.
"I may be spending a lot of time in my bedroom -- with the door shut."