Talking Turkey

It’s the Monday before Thanksgiving, so let’s talk turkey.  First, hit the grocery store, lug home a frozen bird, realize it doesn’t fit in your fridge because of all the other food you’ve got to fix for Thanksgiving, find the large cooler, realize you have to clean it out, use up all of your ice for the cooler (which really sucks because by now you need a margarita and by god, you must have ice), not to mention clean your house, get up before the crack of dawn on Thanksgiving morning to fix the damn bird, and blah, blah, blah, the turkey comes out as dry as a west Texas lawn in the middle of summer.

Which is why I don’t do turkey.

This year my family and I are traveling to spend the holiday with my parents.  Last year we spent it with my husband’s dad.  (He turned 70 on Thanksgiving, so he’d called dibs on the holiday well in advance.)  I am all about going to someone else’s house.  I will gladly bring a dish or two as long as it’s not the bird.  You see, I’m known in my family for fixing ugly food which tastes good.  Cakes which fall apart, cheesecakes which crack, beef tips with some scary purplish-brown stuff on it (mushroom wine sauce).  But the turkey?  Turns out dry every time no matter what I do to it.

One of my favorite Thanksgivings was the first one that I did not spend with family BY CHOICE.  I’d missed a few due to work obligations and being too far to travel, but a few of our friends from college talked us into joining them in Las Vegas for the holiday.  (Vegas?  For Thanksgiving?  Can we do that?!)  I expected to catch a lot of flak for our choice, but I have zero regrets about my renegade Thanksgiving.  And when it came time for our official holiday meal, my one request was no turkey.  I don’t remember exactly what I had, but I remember it was amazing.  My turkey-free Thanksgiving was a lot of fun and I was very thankful to be with people I love, even if they weren’t related by blood or marriage.

I suppose I should be all sentimental and what not and list all the things I’m thankful for, but it feels so presumptuous when I’m thankful for these things every day, not just the fourth Thursday of November.  But here I go, totally stream of conscious, which means I’m bound to leave out something really, really important that I’m totally thankful for.  (Please don’t hate on me if I do.)  I’m thankful for…my husband, my kids, the rest of my family, my friends, stretch pants, my new really comfy desk chair, my treadmill (gonna need that big time after Thursday), my new bookshelf, the gift of sight (even if it is getting crappier), the ability to read all the wonderful books that are on my bookshelf, RWA, my writing friends (especially my Four Foxes One Hound blogmates 🙂  ), that I can drive a car, that some people actually know how to use their turn signal, a damn good martini, James Bond, Daniel Craig as James Bond, Daniel Craig as just about anybody so long as I get to look at him…

*sigh* all those really good looking British dudes (yeah, I know Thanksgiving is an American holiday…which means I’m free to be thankful for foreign delights), French cuisine, French wine, any wine (as long as it’s not too sweet), sweet potato casserole, and last but not least, a Thanksgiving turkey I don’t have to cook.

About Micki Gibson

Young Adult fiction writer
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12 Responses to Talking Turkey

  1. jeff7salter says:

    LOL, Micki … you can turn a phrase.
    “as dry as a west Texas lawn in the middle of summer” — someone who’s lived in TX or travelled extensively there (like me) could really appreciate this image.
    “ugly food which tastes good” — hmm, might need more examples. I mean, if it’s just lopsided or catty-wampus, that’s no problem for me. But if it resembles toxic waste, I’m not a sampler.

    I’ve gotten tired of turkey also — though nothing to do with its preparation. I think I just prefer ham these days. Might go back, but who knows?
    Oh, and none of our ‘coolers’ are clean either. After they’ve been used — often for something which turns icky — they promptly vanish into some sort of purgatory. They only reappear when we conjure them back. Then we — like you — have to scrub & scour them.

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    • Micki Gibson says:

      “Catty-wampus” I do not use that word nearly enough! And yes, that tends to be what my “ugly food” tends to look like. Cakes usually turn up looking like a kindergartener decorated it. (And I’m sure some kindergarteners take offense to that since they decorate much better than I do.) Happy Thanksgiving, Jeff!

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  2. Lavada Dee says:

    Loved your blog, a good laugh at bringing home the frozen turkey. And Vegas for Thanksgiving sounds good to me.

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    • Micki Gibson says:

      Vegas was a blast and low stress, but I have to admit I still long for the traditional Thanksgiving Day most years. A change-up every once in a while makes me appreciate my “normal” Thanksgivings so much more when I realized I’m missed. Or maybe it’s my ugly, cracked cheesecake that’s missed. Either way, have a Happy Thanksgiving and I’m glad you stopped by, Lavada!

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  3. Hey, whatever works for you! I spent so many years catering to everyone,(learned martyrdom at my mother’s knee), and although I am still not into selfishness and am still keen on giving,I have found that anything that can make life a little easier on me, (and not harm anyone in the doing), makes me VERY happy.So cook or don’t cook, turkey or don’t turkey,(as a matter of fact ,DON’T, you are too funny!). Ihave family traveling here and I am going to have a ball feeding them some of my specialties.If you are one of the people who travel to relatives, where would the cooks among us be without you????

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    • Micki Gibson says:

      Tonette, I’m very thankful for the ones who do all or most of the cooking for us traveling slackers. 🙂 I suspect it will be my turn one day as it passed on from my father’s mother to my mother, but I’ve got two sisters and either one of them could take the reins since we move often (Navy) and never know where we’ll end up. Regardless, I think there is something comforting about a consistent holiday hostess. I have wonderful memories of hovering in my grandmother’s kitchen when I was younger even though I’m sure I was totally in the way. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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  4. Laurie Ryan says:

    While I can’t quite break away from certain holiday traditions (like turkey), I loved your blog. I’ve cooked a lot of turkeys in my life and they never come out the same. Why is that, anyhow? I follow the same directions I’ve had in my recipe box for years. Anyhow, I digress. I believe holidays should be spent how each of us like to spend them. So good for you for knowing what works and what doesn’t. 🙂 Happy Thanksgiving, Micki!

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    • Micki Gibson says:

      I have to admit, if I’m at my mom’s for Thanksgiving, I’d be seriously disappointed if there was no creamed corn. There’s something to be said for traditions. I guess the bottom line is I enjoy spending my holidays with people I love, whether we’re related or not. Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for dropping by, Laurie!

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  5. I could totally hear you saying all that about the turkey- I’m like you with the good tasting food that doesn’t look too great. I love to cook, but it’s never pretty.

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  6. Micki Gibson says:

    I don’t mind the cooking nearly as much as the cleaning. And when you say you can hear me saying that, do you mean in my usual babble until I’ve strayed so far from my point kind of rambling? Yeah, I get that a lot. 🙂 Have a Happy Thanksgiving Jillian!

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