Lists I Like

  • Vinegar-saddened potatoes, seasoned in the shadow of an man bursting with regret, accompanied by a side of angsty pomegranate steeped three hours in leeks, ennui, and the bourgeois consumerism of a successful older sibling.
  • Orphaned zucchini aged in the sound of children’s laughter, embittered in vinegar, anise, and the deep-eyed stares of a loyal dog, gazing ever-hopefully out the window, even though her owner is late coming home from work.
  • Friendless goat in emotionally processed micro greens. Do make sure the greens are micro, as they have to be small in comparison with the universe. This dish is best served at a table for one, far from home, while browsing Facebook on your phone.
  • Feet of an overworked duck, braised for the amount of time it takes Sisyphus to roll his boulder up and down the same mountain three times. For the braising liquid, try to locate at your local wine store a debauched pinot noir, with a misanthropic nose, surprisingly empty on the palate, and a sardonic finish.
  • Porterhouse steak, burnt to black by your ex-girlfriend, served on a collectible plate featuring images of her looking really great since you two broke up.
  • Stringy Rooster, marinated in what you think is, at first, an awkward silence, but which turns out to be the casual indifference of eternity.

By Torrey Peters.

Don’t be fooled by their reputation for being thoughtless. These roly-poly birds have a few tricks up their wings.

  • They Can Fly

They’re not too bad at it, either. A wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) flying at full speed can reach 55 mph. This speediness is only a trait of wild turkeys, though; the domesticated variety was bred to be hefty, not aerodynamic.

  • The Birds Were Named After The Country

The turkey is an American bird, so why does it share its name with a country on the other side of the world? Laziness, mostly. Turkish traders had been importing African guinea fowl to Europe for some time when North American explorers started shipping M. gallopavo back to the Old World. The American birds looked kind of like the African “turkey-cocks,” and so Europeans called them turkeys. Eventually, the word turkey came to describe M. gallopavo exclusively.

  • They Nearly Went Extinct

Like the Galapagos tortoise and the bison, the turkey is just too delicious for its own good. By the early 20th century, the combination of overzealous hunting and habitat destruction had dwindled the turkey populations down to 30,000. With the help of conservationists, the turkey made a comeback. The birds are now so numerous that they’ve become a nuisance in some parts of the country.

  • They’ve Got Two Stomachs

Like all birds, turkeys don’t have teeth, so they’ve got to enlist some extra help to break down their food. Each swallowed mouthful goes first into a chamber called a proventriculus, which uses stomach acid to start softening the food. From there, food travels to the gizzard, where specialized muscles smash it into smaller pieces.

  • Female Turkeys Don’t Gobble

Turkeys of both sexes purr, whistle, cackle, and yelp, but only the males gobble. A gobble is the male turkey’s version of a lion’s roar, announcing his presence to females and warning his rivals to stay away. To maximize the range of their calls, male turkeys often gobble from the treetops.

  • Eating Turkey Is Not Going To Knock You Out

Turkey meat does contain the amino acid tryptophan, and tryptophan can have a calming effect. However, you’d have to eat a whole lot of turkey—and nothing else—to notice any effect. The sleepy feeling that you feel after the big meal is more likely caused by carbs, alcohol, and generally eating to excess.

  • Ben Franklin Never Proposed The Turkey As A National Bird

While it is true that the statesman and inventor had a thing for turkeys, he didn’t object to the bald eagle becoming a symbol of our fledgling nation. However, he did say that M. gallopavo was “a much more respectable Bird.”

  • They Sleep In Trees

Due to their aforementioned deliciousness, turkeys have a lot of natural predators. As the sun goes down, the turkeys go up—into the trees. They start by flying onto a low branch, then clumsily hop their way upward, branch by branch, until they reach a safe height.

  • Both Male And Female Turkeys Have Wattles

The wattle is the red dangly bit under the turkey’s chin. The red thing on top of the beak is called a snood. Both sexes have those, too, but they’re more functional in male turkeys. Studies have shown that female turkeys prefer mates with longer snoods, which may indicate health and good genes.

  • They Have Really Good Vision

Turkeys’ eyes are really, really sharp. On top of that, they’ve got terrific peripheral vision. We humans can only see about 180 degrees, but given the placement of their eyes on the sides of their heads, turkeys can see 270 degrees. They’ve also got way better color vision than we do and can see ultraviolet light.

  • They’re Fast On The Ground, Too.

You wouldn’t guess by looking at them, but turkeys can really book it when they need to. We already know they’re fast in the air; on land, a running turkey can reach up to 25 mph—as fast as a charging elephant.

  • They’re Smart … But Not That Smart

Turkeys can recognize each other by sound, and they can visualize a map of their territory. They can also plan ahead and recognize patterns. In other ways, they’re very, very simple animals. Male turkeys will attack anything that looks remotely like a threat, including their own reflections in windows and car doors.

  • Baby Turkeys Can Fend For Themselves

Baby turkeys, or poults, are precocial. This means that they’ve already got downy feathers when they’re born, and they can walk, run, and get their own food. Turkey moms defend their poults from predators, but that’s about all they need to do. The fluffy chicks are pretty self-sufficient.

  • There Was No Turkey At The First Thanksgiving

The written menu listed “fowl,” but this most likely meant duck, goose, or grouse. The pilgrims did have a taste for bald eagle, however, so it’s possible the as-yet-undeclared national symbol was a central part of the feast.

  • In The Event Of A Turkey Attack, Call The Police

They might look silly, but a belligerent turkey is no joke. Male turkeys work very hard to impress other turkeys, and what could be more impressive than attacking a bigger animal? Turkey behavior experts advise those who find themselves in close quarters with the big birds to call the police if things get mean. Until the authorities arrive, they say, your best bet is to make yourself as big and imposing as you possibly can. Don’t believe it? Check out this post: Wild Turkeys Fight Back

So, I’m on this rant about Turkeys and came up with this cool list of Turkey Trivia and other useful (or not) information. Did you know?

  • The wild turkey is native to Northern Mexico and the Eastern United States.
  • Turkeys lived in North America almost ten million years ago .
  • The turkey was domesticated in Mexico and brought to Europe in the 16th century.
  • The American Indians hunted wild turkey for its meat as early as 1000 A.D. They made turkey “callers” out of turkey wing bones. The feathers were used to decorate ceremonial clothing. The spurs on the legs of wild tom turkeys were used on arrowheads and the feathers were used to stabilize the arrows.
  • Adult turkeys can have 3,500 feathers.
  • Most turkey feathers are composted. Feathers are spread out on fields, then plowed under in the spring. The feathers decompose and fertilize the soil.
  • After the female turkey mates, she prepares a nest under a bush in the woods and lays her tan and speckled brown eggs. She incubates as many as 18 eggs at a time.
  • The average turkey hen will lay 110 to 115 eggs during a 28-30 week period.
  • Turkey eggs hatch in 28 days.
  • Turkey eggs are light tan with brown specks and are larger than chicken eggs.
  • A turkey egg weighs from 80 grams to 100 grams (3 to 4 ounces).
  • A baby turkey is called a “poult”.
  • When the babies hatch they flock with their mother all year (even through the winter). For the first two weeks the poults are unable to fly. The mother roosts on the ground with them during this time.
  • Wild turkeys spend the night in trees. They roost (perch) on the branches.
  • Gobbling turkeys can be heard a mile away on a quiet day.
  • Turkeys don’t really have ears like ours, but they have very good hearing.
  • A large group of turkeys is called a flock.
  • Turkeys are related to pheasants.
  • As male turkeys gets older they fight a lot. They may even attack people.
  • Turkeys can see movement almost a hundred yards away.
  • Turkeys do not see well at night.
  • The turkey has an unusual looking bare head with a beak, caruncle, snood and wattle.
  • Turkeys’ heads change colors when they become excited.
  • The male turkey is called a tom or gobbler. The female turkey is called a hen.
  • A turkey has 157 bones!
  • According to the Guinness Book of Records the largest turkey raised was 39.09 kilograms (86 pounds) — about the size of a large dog.
  • In the wild, Turkeys can live as long as 10 years.   They spend their lives roosting in trees and flying at up to fifty miles per hour.

I am totally loving this song. It’s from Good Looking Blues (2000) by Laika. You can listen to it via the YouTube clip of the song is at the bottom of this post.

If you receive an e-mail with a subject of badtimes
Delete it immediately without reading it
This is the most dangerous e-mail virus yet
It will re-write your hard disk

Not only that but it will scramble any disks
That are even close to your computer
It will recalibrate your refrigerators coolness setting
So all your ice cream melts

It will demagnetize the strips on all your credit cards
Screw up the tracking on your VCR
And use subspace field harmonics
To render any CD’s you try to play unreadable

It will give your ex-boy/girlfriend your new phone number
It will mix antifreeze into your fish-tank
It will drink all your beer and leave its socks out
On the coffee table when there’s company coming over

It will put a dead kitten in the back pocket of your good suit
And hide your car keys when you are late for work
Badtimes will make you fall in love with a penguin
It will give you nightmares about circus midgets

It will pour sugar in your gas tank and shave off both your eyebrows
While dating your current boy/girlfriend behind your back
And billing the dinner and hotel room to your visa card
It will seduce your grandmother, it does not matter if she is dead

Such is the power of badtimes, it reaches out beyond the grave
To sully those things we hold most dear, it moves your car randomly
Around parking lots so you can’t find it, it will kick your dog
It will leave libidinous messages on your boss’s voice mail in your voice

It is insidious and subtle, it is dangerous and terrifying to behold
It is also a rather interesting shade of mauve
Badtimes will give you Dutch elm disease
It will leave the toilet seat up

It will make a batch of methamphetamine in your bathtub
And then leave bacon cooking on the stove while it goes out
To chase high school kids with your new snowblower
These are just a few of the signs, be very very careful

Written by Guy Fixsen, Margaret Fiedler.

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