December 8th : The Turkey…

There’s a curious thing about Christmas that everybody seems to have taken as being essential… And it’s right there in the middle of the dinner table. It’s that big steaming roasted bit of poultry… You know what i mean… The Turkey!

But why the hell is it there? Why does it specifically have to be a turkey that we eat on christmas day and not… Crocodile or Kangaroo. (Btw… I’ve had both and liked them!) It’s not like Turkey’s are a common bird across the world after all… They originate from the Americas. Breeding a bird that is native to only a few countries sounds like a bit of an environmental quandiary to me… You either have to transport millions of them across the globe or set up special farms… and if a breeding pair escape you could possibly have an ecological disaster on your hands (Hey…It’s happened before with other species.)

Well the thing is that Turkey hasn’t always been the case. In fact it’s a relatively recent tradition. Back in medieval times the tradition was to have either Peacock or Boar (Or in one case a peacock riding a boar…). It wasn’t until Henry VIII had a turkey christmas dinner in the 16th century (Supposedly) that the practice caught on.  But even then Turkey wasn’t even a mainstay of the christmas table. It didn’t go wide until Dickens published A Christmas Carol in 1843. (Interestingly this is the same source that popularized the phrase ‘Merry Christmas’ and a lot of other things.) Before that (But after Henry VIII) people had adopted goose as the main staple of Christmas dinner (possibly because it was cheaper than peacock).

And even though you might think Turkey was an american tradition (being a native bird) it’s actually wrong. The British took it first and then the American’s adopted it afterwards… And, as a matter of fact, turkey is much more associated with Thanksgiving across a lot of America (Or that’s what I discovered from the troll comments on other sites… EG: ‘TURKEY AT CHRISTMAS??? WTF…).

So… This has got me thinking as I don’t really like Turkey and I only eat it once year to remind myself of how bad it is. The meat is dry and flavorless whilst the bird itself as ugly as fuck. I reckon it’s time to ditch the old turkey and go back to something like Goose… Or even pick a new bird to have for our ‘traditional’ christmas dinners… There are plenty of dirty fat pigeons around… Or how about Magpie? Hang on… I’ve got it…. SEAGULL… That’d serve the little pests right!

Another Christmas door opens tomorrow…

(PS: It’s apparently illegal in the uk to catch and kill a seagull under the wildlife and countryside act… However… If you just so happen to find one by the side of the road…)

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