My Dysfunctional Relationship with Turkey

Okay. Granted, I was a little grumpy yesterday. But I’m breathing and doing yoga all while sipping mojitos with festive sprigs of fresh mint, and really I feel just fine.

It’s all led me to think of my dysfunctional relationship with turkey. Turkey, to me, is a like that bad boyfriend you had in high school, you know the one with the mowhawk who got high on lunch hour and listened to Depeche Mode; that boyfriend that you knew your parents disapproved of but you kept going back to him. The boyfriend all your other dysfunctional relationships are measured against.

I’m totally lost now. This is why you should never extend a metaphor.

Oh! Okay. Me and turkey. I love turkey. I hate turkey. I’ve tried to quit….cold turkey, but the rat bastard calls me back. It’s all that golden skin and rich lusciousness. And basically any turkey is good turkey with a good wine-based gravy. Turkey makes a home smell homey. It makes Thanksgiving feel like a real holiday instead of an awkward reception dinner.

You bad turkey, you

One year, I tried to cook dim sum. We had pot stickers and eggrolls and spicy tofu and little dumplings and you know, I missed the turkey. And it’s everything that turkey goes with: the potatoes, soft and fluffy and occasionally lumpy, the stuffing (mine with sausage and apple), the bad casseroles that no one quite understands but take heaping spoonfuls anyway.

I never cook a turkey right. It’s always overdone or underdone. It’s that love hate thing again. What I’ve noticed though, if you’re with friends and family, if you’re drinking a little wine and reminiscing, if everything is awkward and slightly uncomfortable, if someone starts a fight with a sibling or someone else starts crying, it’s the turkey that makes it bearable—for there’s the one magical moment where everyone sets the personal issues aside, sits together at the table and takes  a collective breath, and there is peace. And sometimes in that moment of quiet, we realize just how much we love the people in our lives, even though they make us crazy.

And of course, afterwards, everyone takes a nap due to turkey-drug-effect. And that’s not bad either.

Speaking of…time to cook the artichoke dip and get ready for the hike to Brendan and George’s. There’s no dim sum today, and that’s just the way I like it. I like my old bad boyfriend. He does, after all, have great legs.