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So long turkeys, good riddance

November 25, 2010|By TIM ROWLAND | timr@herald-mail.com
  • Tim Rowland
Tim Rowland

It was a still Thanksgiving morning at Little Farm by the Creek. As the sun appeared over the crest of South Mountain, a thin mist rose off the stream like the description in a Thomas Hardy novel. Somewhere a dog barked.

No, that's hardly good enough. Let me try again:

Juliet the Siamese cat was the first to notice a paradigm shift at Little Farm by the Creek. While being privy to none of the day's transpirings first-hand, her keen feline awareness had somehow sensed a meaningful change ...

No.

It was the best Thanksgiving the farm had ever known. For the arrow of peace and tranquility had finally found its mark and pierced the beating heart of fortitude that all summer long had been so resolute, so unwavering through times of turmoil, so, so — so shoot.

I give up. I have been writing this Special Occasion column in my head for seven months now, and when the time is upon me to write, I miss the mark.

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It's just too big a stage, I guess, too cataclysmic an event for me to keep my head. For the turkeys that have tortured my soul have now gone to that big garnished platter in the sky, where they can no longer attack me with their pointed beaks and ear-splitting gobbles.

I am aware that some people have hinted around that I must to some degree be exaggerating their obnoxiousness — that no creature could be so pathologically clinging, so aggressively stupid as what I have described.

Well for you, there's this little thing I like to call "YouTube," where I have posted the turkey's assault on a Clorox bottle, at www.youtube.com/watch?v=dioIOhAAqY8 (if that's too much, you can just search turkeys v. bleach).

Your guess is as good as mine as to what a Clorox bottle would mean to a gang of Toms, but it got so bad that if we wanted to disinfect the milk room or scrub down a water trough, we had to do it when the turkeys had been put up for the night, lest we risk a march of the psychotic drumsticks.

No other vessel made them so angry. No other consumer household product would even so much as get their admittedly limited attention. Bottles of Lysol, Mr. Clean and Windex were all safe. But Clorox set them off.

The only other thing that made them flip out like this was each other. Sometimes they got into such bloody fights it became a real effort to keep them alive long enough to kill them.

So you can see what I was up against, and what a relief it is to have them gone. I know there are a few animal rights people who may feel bad about eating a turkey on Thanksgiving. Don't. You are doing the nation a service as a right-thinking American.

The day before they were to fulfill their mission, one of the turkey hens committed the eternal sin of chasing Beth's bulldog Hannah across the parking lot. Beth is a forgiving person and you can do a lot of things that she will overlook — but do not ever mess with her bulldog.

(My own view was that an animal trained, however long ago, to tangle with a 1 ton Brahman really shouldn't be running from a female bird, but I was smart enough not to bring that up.)

So any last thread of sympathy any of us may have had for these miserable creatures evaporated like steam over a mound of stuffing. Pulling weeds has generated more emotion in me than crating up the turkeys on that last journey.

Of course weeds can't attack Clorox jugs, so the turkeys and I will always have that.

Tim Rowland is a Herald-Mail columnist. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 6997, or via e-mail attimr@herald-mail.com. Tune in to the Rowland Rant video under opinion@herald-mail.com, on antpod.com or on Antietam Cable's WCL-TV Channel 30 at 6:30 p.m. New episodes are released every Wednesday.

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