Blog: Turkeys

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Burt Ross

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, what a perfect time for me to share with you what I think of turkeys — in a nutshell, not very much.

Back in New Jersey, we were inundated with turkeys. They were everywhere, including only a few minutes from the George Washington Bridge where I lived. I had ample opportunity to observe them up close, and they are not a pretty sight.

The Tom Turkey is quite colorful and ugly. I don’t mean just plain ugly, but really ug-a-lee. It’s really hard to believe how any female turkey can be turned on by such a face, but therein lies one of the many mysteries of nature. Tom’s personality is no better than his looks. He is one aggressive beast, and literally scared my 6-foot-4 mailman to the point where he refused to deliver my mail on two separate occasions. 

If all of this weren’t bad enough, turkeys also tend to be stupid and clumsy. On several occasions, the mother turkeys became separated from their chicks by my four-foot fence. They got quite agitated, and sometimes it took them up to 10 minutes to figure out that they could simply hop right over the fence. At sunset, the turkeys would fly high up into the trees where they spent the night, but these birdbrains had great difficulty understanding that a four-foot fence was not an insurmountable obstacle.

When turkeys fly, they are not remotely the Fred Astaire of the bird world. They fly up into the trees crashing through branches, and when they return to earth at sunrise, they tend to plummet more than fly. 

So, I guess what I am saying is, their place at our Thanksgiving table is where they make their greatest contribution. I don’t mean to offend animal lovers, of which I am one, but all in the animal kingdom are not equal in my book. 

And so, when you count your blessings this Thanksgiving, after you express appreciation for living in this truly remarkable community of Malibu, don’t forget to be thankful for not being born a turkey.