Dinner Party Talk – For your weekend

It’s Thanksgiving week. So, let’s talk turkey:
Turkey lingo. A “fryer” is a turkey under 16 weeks of age and a “roaster” is 5 to 7 months old. An old male turkey is better eating than a “young tom,” which is said to be stringy. But sorry, ladies, an old hen isn’t good eating. She’s known as a “tough bird.”
Turkey tradition. In 1947 President Truman pardoned a turkey. Each year since, the president gets to send one lucky ducky to retire at a public farm named Frying Pan Park in Herndon, Virginia. (The other 45 million of his feathered friends aren’t so lucky. They’re gobbled up with stuffing.)
The other Turkey. 73 million people live in Turkey, a country where they do not celebrate Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving Day Parade. My first year in NYC I performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I was Paddington Bear’s English Bobby escort. My toes froze and I had to keep yelling back to the crowd in my faux-English accent: “Eee’s not Pooh Bear! Eee’s Paddington Bear.” If you want something extra special for the kids, sneak down to the city Wednesday afternoon and watch the balloons inflate behind the Museum of Natural History on Central Park West. It’s magical. A friend at Macy’s told me this year’s new balloons are Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Kung Fu Panda. Here’s hoping neither of them crushes a spectator.
Black Friday. The opening salvo of the shopping season and the day retailers hope to turn a profit or be “in the black.” The earliest known reference to “Black Friday” as a day of shopper’s delight was made in 1966 by Bonnie Taylor-Blake of the American Dialect Society, referring to the Philadelphia Police Department’s term for the day of massive traffic jams and over-crowded sidewalks. It was not a term of endearment. It’s victims would agree. Since 2008 there have been at least 3 deaths and multiple injuries on frenzied Friday. I’ve seen the madness firsthand. As a child in South Carolina, I watching two grown women come to blows over 2-for-1 pantyhose.
Now, eat your dinner!

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