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The Manure Spreader: Tough turkey

Tim Moffet Published on 06 November 2015

At Thanksgiving dinner, always remember to compliment the chef. Just know that if you compliment your mother-in-law on the “turkey neck,” be sure she knows you meant the actual turkey. Tryptophan in turkey will only make you tired, but a mother-in-law has the ability to “put you to sleep” permanently.

Benjamin Franklin actually opposed having the bald eagle as the national bird and wanted to replace it with the turkey. Somehow, I don’t think America would ever be taken seriously if Air Force One pulled up with a Butterball turkey painted on the side.

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There are actually more than 10 million wild turkeys in the U.S., excluding Hawaii. And I understand why. Have you seen the price for flights to Hawaii? There really isn’t any space for turkey on the menu with all the pineapple, poi and Spam. The state of Wisconsin actually has the highest per-capita consumption of wild turkey – with Pabst Blue Ribbon in a close second.

I have never used a gun for hunting turkey, but I have tried using my truck. This is a true story:

Last year, a few days before Thanksgiving, I was traveling to my brother’s farm. I was on a two-lane country road. Not another car in sight, with woods on one side of the road and open hay fields on the other. I was cruising at 65 mph listening to George Strait when I noticed a turkey running through the field straight for me.

At first, I thought maybe he needed a ride. Then I thought, “Maybe this turkey is playing ‘chicken’ with me.” No. This turkey is a kamikaze bomber. I can’t remember from geometry class what it’s called when line A intersects with line B, but if I was driving a tow truck, this is where they invented tofurkey. (You might have to read that sentence twice to get that joke.)

All of a sudden, the turkey hits the grill of my truck, then bounces up to hit the windshield spread-eagle; that’s when I knew it was a male turkey. He then rolled over the cab, hit the tailgate and landed in the bed of my truck. Sweet! Thanksgiving dinner.

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At this point, with a dead animal in the bed of my truck, I did what any self-respecting person would do: Floor it. Hunting turkey without a license is a $1,000 fine. “Seriously, Mr. Game Warden, he flew into the bed of my truck … you don’t believe me, check for bullet holes … uh, yes, I’m the only guy that hunts turkey with a baseball bat. I snuck up on this one and hit a pop fly Butterball.”

At this point, I’m driving 80 mph. I look in my rearview – and notice the turkey standing up in the truck bed glaring at me in the mirror. I thought turkeys were only tough when my aunt cooked them. This turkey was an ultimate ninja warrior. He then picked up his little turkey foot and did the two-finger point at his eyes as if to say, “I’m watching you.”

All of a sudden, he did a Superman over the tailgate, tumbling end over end. I stopped my truck and got out. He stood up and shook himself off. We looked at each other for a few seconds with an awkward stare. The turkey then ran off into the woods at full speed.

This year, out of respect, I don’t think I’ll be eating turkey at Thanksgiving. ’Cause I’m pretty sure he wrote down my license tag number. Happy Thanksgiving!  PD

Tim is a dairy farmer and stand-up comedian. Visit his website to have him at your next event .

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