11-21-2018 History

The Paw Paw River Journal

The great turkey scam Warning! If you are a great fan of turkeydom… just love those fowls, you’d better stop reading right now. We are approaching that great turkey day, Thanksgiving, and it’s time for my annual rant, diatribe, or whatever you wish to call it. I just have to get it out of my system. Have you ever really looked at a turkey? Actually they are ugly… they have those jowly things hanging down, and they always look at you suspiciously with those beady little eyes. I’m sorry I can’t explain my unreasonable bias against these birds. I was never frightened by one when I was small. One time I was chased by a huge goose when I was a little kid. Guess I had invaded his territory, and he wanted me out of there. Well I’ve never held much with roast goose either! On that day when we get invited somewhere for dinner, I will be right there, thumping my knife and fork with all the rest and chanting, “Bring on the bird, bring on the bird!” It does look great on the platter, golden brown, with slices of white meat just waiting to be carved. And I love the stuffing. I’ve gotten used to calling it that… we used to think it was “dressing.” But after spending Thanksgivings out in Pennsylvania… if you ask for dressing out there, they will pass the gravy! And all the side dishes! It is not the time or place for a coward or a dieter. I love the holiday, and I eat the turkey… fine. And there is stuffing, mashed potatoes, luscious gravy… and with all the people usually gathered there will be coleslaw, baked beans, fruit salad, cranberry sauce, salad, and who knows what else… mostly furnished by our kids: Deb & Gary, Becky & Jim, Rob, and Laurie & Jim, and the other guests. When those dishes have been thoroughly decimated, out will come the desserts. They usually include pumpkin pie, pecan pie, perhaps a dirt cake, ice cream, and even more. We’d better get off the subject… it’s making me too hungry! Then later on in the day when it’s time for reruns, people will be carving more white meat from what is left of the turkey carcass. And you’ll find me out in the kitchen putting peanut butter on a biscuit. But I’ll be back with my biscuit and perhaps a few of the side dishes. I love the camaraderie and warm family stories. We always have a lot of fun. One day recently the Chief Accountant said to me, “You know, I’ve never cooked a turkey! I’ve bought a lot of them but I’ve never roasted one in our oven.” When I asked her if it was because I didn’t like all the reruns, turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, etc., she replied, “No, I do a lot of dinners, and I’d just like to go out to eat once in a while!” And I agreed with her. So one of our daughters (Becky is the most centrally located) cooks the turkey. And people bring stuff. We’ve had some marvelous family dinners like that. Various people bring salads, desserts, and other trimmings. Lately we’ve had a new component. Becky’s Jim bought a cooker… odd thing called a “green egg.” It is big, green, and shaped like an egg. It cooks a roast beautifully using hardwood. Every year when this holiday rolls around, there’s something I look forward to on TV. It’s when a huge turkey is presented to the President of the United States and his family. Now it is a tradition that with much ceremony he pardons the bird, and it is sent to live out its days on some big turkey farm. Who knows what happens to him after that, but for the present his life is spared, and he is carried out looking a little confused. I always feel like applauding when that happens and saying to him, “Don’t ask any questions, old boy, just go with the flow!” Lest anyone think I’m being unfair to these beautiful specimens of turkeydom, I just have to add one more incident to prove my point. It’s the story I told before about the wild bird that inhabited daughter Becky and Jim’s forest glade backyard. This guy was beautiful! When he was irritated and fanned out his tail feathers, he was a sight to behold! One day the tranquility of the scene was shattered along with the picture window at the back of their house. It looked over the expanse of yard and surrounding trees. There was a huge crash! When Becky and Jim investigated, that back picture window with double panes had the outer pane lying on the patio in little pieces. And hot footing for the trees was the aforesaid and incredibly vain bird… tail feathers now dragging behind him! Easy to figure out what happened. He approached the window and there staring at him was another bird! Heavens, an interloper. He spread his fan… a really threatening gesture in turkeydom. The bird in the window did likewise. So he charged! And the window exploded! When last seen he was disappearing into the woods, tail feathers dragging and I’ll bet his beak was sore for a week! And so I rest my case! Lest you think I’m being too Scrooge-like, I want to say that I love the holiday. Just don’t ask me to eat turkey leftovers. There’s always a better choice for reruns in these storybook towns along the Paw Paw River when Thanksgiving rolls around!

Coloma Library News Thanksgiving Hours The Library’s Thanksgiving hours will be: Thursday, November 22, Closed; Friday, November 23, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and Saturday, November 24, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Regular hours will resume Monday, November 26. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Book Club The Coloma Library Book Club is meeting on Thursday, November 29 at 5:30 p.m. The title to read before the discussion is “The Sound of Gravel” by Ruth Wariner. Generally, depending on demand there are titles available for check-out at the front desk. The book club regularly meets every other Thursday and is always looking for new members. Read with Spirit Spirit, a certified therapy dog will be at the library on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Children may sign up for a 15-minute slot by stopping in at the front desk or calling the library at 468-3431. Reading to Therapy Dogs is a fun way for children to build reading confidence and fluency. Call 468-3431 with questions on any Coloma Library activity.

Watervliet Library News Teen Table Projects – November Stone Loom Weaving; Make it and take it!

Children’s Programs thru April Story Hours Wednesday 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. & Thursday 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.: Picture books, crafts and fun designed to inspire the love of reading for ages 3 – 5!

Pinteresting Nov. 26, 6:30 – 8 p.m. Arts & crafts for grown-ups: Held the last Monday of the month, sign-up required. Nov. – Holiday paper crafts.

Yoga classes will resume Nov. 28

Library Garden Park Purchase a Legacy Walk brick and celebrate a memory! Bricks are $75; 13 characters, 2 lines. Pick up a form at the library.

Book a Social Work Intern Thanks to an LSTA grant through the Niles Library, Watervliet District Library will have a shared intern for help with on-line applications, unemployment or housing. Please call the library to book an appointment for help. Call 463-6382 with questions on any Watervliet Library activity.