holidays — November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

by Bob Williams

Happy Thanksgiving

We know you have better things to do than to read our blog today. Like head back for your third helping of turkey and dressing – or Aunt Bessie’s coffee cake. There’s also football on TV and catching up on quality time with the family.

But here you are, and for your trouble, we present some fun facts about Thanksgiving. Some tidbits of knowledge you can take back to the table and use to impress that know-it-all brother-in-law.

Gobble Like You Mean It – Actually, only the male turkey, the tom, gobbles. The females, called hens, cackle.

Lots of Layers to Like – Down in Louisiana, they came up with a dish called Turducken, which is a turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken. Everything is deboned before it’s telescoped along with bread crumbs and some special seasoning.

Ready, Set, Shop! – Since the 1930s, the day after Thanksgiving Day, called “Black Friday,” has been the day the American Christmas shopping season officially gets underway. Unless of course, you’re a plumber. At least one national plumbing company reports Black Friday has traditionally been their busiest day of the year. It seems all that overeating has, well, consequences.

Fly Like … a Turkey? – Ben Franklin wanted to make the turkey the national bird. Since the eagle could be a scavenger and the turkey was smart, Franklin thought Ol’ Tom to be more “respectable.”

So Much for Job Description – Any domestic turkey that’s less than 12 weeks old is a “fryer-roaster.” This term should not be confused with the name for a group of wild turkeys, which is NOT a flock or a gaggle, but a “rafter.”

Stuffing Your Way – Apparently how we like our stuffing depends on where we live. Half of Americans put their stuffing in the turkey; the rest serve it on the side. And just what goes into the stuffing can vary as well. In the South, the base for stuffing is cornbread; elsewhere, it’s white bread. And stuffing can also include oysters, apples, raisins, sausage or giblets from the turkey.

Bigger Ain’t Better – And to cap off the fascinating facts you may never use, the World’s Heaviest Turkey is credited to Philip Cook in 1989, according to the Guinness Book of Records. Unfortunately, Mr. Cook – and the competition that crowned his tom, Tyson, with the Heaviest Turkey award, was in London, England, not the U.S. The tubby Tyson weighed in at a portly 86 pounds – without any stuffing. On the wild side, the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) says the heaviest wild turkey registered by a hunter was taken by David Cody Guess in Kentucky. The wild gobbler tipped the scales at nearly 38 pounds.

Well it seems you’ve wasted just enough time with us to grab that last-chance dessert before the big game. We’ve enjoyed our little visit. Like Mom used to say, “Come back when you can stay longer.”

Happy Thanksgiving!

Our thanks to for their help with our factoid list!


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