Turkey trivia for Thanksgiving morning

With another Thanksgiving, local news seems scarce and it may be time to call attention to the bird at hand – the role turkeys play in our culture outside of that as entrée.

Their most famous moment to many was in the 1978 WKRP in Cincinnati episode called “Turkeys Away.”

That involved the unfortunate bird bombing of a shopping center because the boss thought the domestic birds could fly. Google it – still funny.

Then there is the need to set straight an old story that domestic turkeys are so stupid that they look up when it rains and drown. That is slander, the experts say.

But they do have heart attacks. When the Air Force was conducting jet tests breaking the sound barrier, fields of turkeys dropped dead.

Then there is the fact that Ben Franklin thought the wild turkey should be the nation’s symbol instead of the bald eagle, a bird of bad character that steals food and is so cowardly that little kingbirds drive him away.

More on that and a questionable theory on how Christopher Columbus gave the turkey its name based on Hebrew words.

Finally, some live turkeys from the Missouri Department of Conservation.


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