Restrictions on holiday celebrations in California. This is not a spoof. You will think it is a joke, but it is not.

No fun allowed sign. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

The California Department of Public Health has listed their specific restrictions on holiday gatherings. There are serious limits on what you can do for your Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Year celebration.

I’m not making this up.

Check out for yourself the Guidance for Private Gatherings published on 10/9/20.

In case you think I imagined all this, I will quote select portions of the guidance.

So, if you happen to be one of the people who have not yet moved out of California, or you are waiting for the moving van to arrive, here are the requirements for your holiday celebrations –

(Again, this is not a spoof.)

You may not gather with friends inside your home. You are still allowed to let guests use your bathroom, assuming you scrub down the bathroom quite frequently:

“All gatherings must be held outside. Attendees may go inside to use restrooms as long as the restrooms are frequently sanitized.”

No more than three households may gather together.

Don’t think that you can go to the park and have three family units gather in one corner of the park and another three households gather fifty feet away. Good try…you may not have any contact with other groups at the park:

“A gathering of no more than three households is permitted in a public park or other outdoor space, even if unrelated gatherings of other groups up to three households are also occurring in the same park or other outdoor space.  If multiple such gatherings are occurring, mixing between group gatherings is not allowed.  Additionally, multiple gatherings of three households cannot be jointly organized or coordinated to occur in the same public park or other outdoor space at the same time – this would constitute a gathering exceeding the permitted size.”  

You may not, repeat not, pass a platter of turkey, bowl of mashed potatoes, or dish of cranberry sauce during any meal:

“Shared items should not be used during a gathering. As much as possible, any food or beverages at outdoor gatherings must be in single-serve disposable containers. If providing single-serve containers is not possible, food and beverages must be served by a person who washes or sanitizes their hands frequently, and wears a face covering. Self-serve items from communal containers should not be used.”

Make sure you pick up a bunch of single serving, disposable containers when you go to the store to get your Thanksgiving dinner supplies. You will need a lot of them. Might want to get enough for Christmas and New Years as well

Forget about touch football. Not allowed. That involves too much close contact:

“For any gatherings permitted under this guidance, the space must be large enough so that everyone at a gathering can maintain at least a 6-foot physical distance from others (not including their own household) at all times.”

Softball might be allowed. Oh wait. Forget it. That catcher position would be a problem as would having anyone on base during the game.  Remember the 6 foot limit. On the other hand, it would be a high scoring game since you are not allowed to throw out any runners. Hard to tag someone out with a 6 foot separation.

Oh yeah, that football or softball game would require too much exertion as well:

“Singing, chanting, shouting, and physical exertion significantly increases the risk of COVID-19 transmission because these activities increase the release of respiratory droplets and fine aerosols into the air. Because of this, singing, chanting, and shouting are strongly discouraged, but if they occur, the following rules and recommendations apply:

  • “People who are singing, shouting, chanting, or exercising are strongly encouraged to maintain physical distancing beyond 6 feet to further reduce risk. (Emphasis added, in case you missed that tidbit)
  • “People who are singing or chanting are strongly encouraged to do so quietly (at or below the volume of a normal speaking voice).”

I guess that means you may not tell any really good jokes.

Scratch retelling those favorite family stories which would generate hearty laughter. The resulting amusement would clearly involve more than the government allowed levels of exertion. Would be too loud as well, so that is a double ban.

You may not allow any guests to linger after they finished eating:

“Gatherings should be two hours or less.  The longer the duration, the risk of transmission increases.”

So no more of that ol’ tradition of waiting a few hours after the meal so you can really enjoy desert.

Other than that, have a happy Thanksgiving.


Again, this is not a spoof.

I’m not half clever enough to make up something this silly.

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