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Posts tagged ‘Social / Political Commentary’

Thanksgiving: Viewed from the Plate

This coming weekend is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada, with the day itself keeping the tradition of second Monday in October.  Considered one of those occasions to bond with family, as with the U.S. version later in November, it hasn’t dovetailed into the latter’s four-day event also celebrating the shopping madness of ‘Black Friday’.

While these are longstanding festivities in both countries, with historical origins involving early explorers and settlers, this is looking at things only from the side of the consumer, i.e. the one enjoying the repast.

How much effort has been expended to consider things from the standpoint of the fully committed main attraction as provider, i.e. the turkey?  Yes, there are many components in a special feast, but traditionally the appearance and carving of the cooked bird is a major anticipation.

From the point of view of the turkey, there’s not much to celebrate.

On top of this, there are numerous examples of dire treatment on the way to a diner’s plate.  One of the most famous is depicted in a famous episode of the TV comedy WKRP in Cincinnati.  The radio station manager’s promotion goes downhill dramatically after an authorized dropping of live turkeys from a helicopter, over a shopping mall, turns (predictably) badly. He delivers a line of tragically comic clarity: “As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly”.

In reality, wild turkeys can fly, at least for short hops.  But this is insufficient for the vast majority raised for consumption purposes.

Meanwhile, how did turkeys get into this predicament originally?  Probably the following have played a part:

  • The desire of our ancestors to have a meal with a centrepiece, encouraging active participation by attendees
  • The efficiency of having a large sourced meal for family meals and leftovers
  • The comparative advantage of, for example, chickens being able to lay eggs consumable by humans
  • The appeal of compatible side-dishes such as stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce

Clearly, this is a situation turkeys have not lucked into.

If they could somehow band together to do so, what might turkeys be able to do to turn the tide away from dominating the Thanksgiving dinner plate?

  • Throw human concerns about sun-based skin maladies out to the wind by getting as much of a burn as possible
  • Save sufficient funds for a bribe
  • Promote more eating of snacks, to reduce the cooking of big dinners
  • Develop on-line social media support
  • Keep handy, malodorous scents to spray away interest
  • Learn to camouflage, by looking like a dense bush on short notice
  • Protest to parade organizers to have them feature other species
  • Start eating candies and rich desserts to develop a less healthy profile
  • Become a trusted advisor concerning animal related, purchase decisions on ‘Black Friday’
  • Lead celebrations of goodwill to all, enjoyed with take-out foods substituting for big cooked meals

Let’s have another slice to salute the turkeys!

Where Can I Get a GPS Tattoo?

We have become party to a panoply of leisure travel destinations, embellished by baby boomers entering the retirement lifestyle mode in ever-greater numbers.  With this comes the need to satisfy an ever-widening array of interests or concerns, while communicating with a range of cultures.

There is an abundance of information in both printed and on-line forms, not to mention anecdotal tips one may encounter.  Books in full size to pocket size offer flexibility and quick access for travelers on the move, who do not want to be dependent on connecting devices.  (Of course, many younger trip takers prefer the latter.) (more…)

Reserved Seating Not Needed Here

Our most recent taking in a movie, at our local cinema house, exposed a new wrinkle in the ticket buying experience.  Notwithstanding that my spouse and I were attending a less than half-filled show in the afternoon, we had to select our seats in advance, like choosing concert or airline tickets on a laptop screen.

Apparently, this has become de rigueur at least at some local screens in the last month or so.  One would have thought some warning or notification, if only for public relations sake, would have been justified. (more…)

Facing New Developments

Many of us have memories about tracts of land encountered over the years.  They looked natural, bucolic, perhaps even dreamy – largely because they were undeveloped.

Numerous city boundaries are examples of once-upon-a-time urban/rural landscape divides, where, subsequently, developments have caused diffusion of transition points; the ripple impact keeps expanding, so as to permanently blur any clear sense of dividing lines. (more…)

TOP 10 Election Aftermath Realities

Among the truisms of government elections, and candidates’ behaviours, are that many of them are predicated on massage or sublimation.

Such as in the afterglow of Ontario’s provincial election June 7th(more…)

The Price of Being Outspoken

Many are those whose careers have been negatively impacted by being considered too outspoken. Especially when such speech rattles the cages of those in power, there may be consequences disproportionate to a particular issue raised.

Many examples through history illustrate this conundrum.  We don’t have to look past our current age to see this conflict play out. (more…)

Whatever Happened to Esperanto?   

Some of us are old enough to remember that, before the end of the last century, there seemed to be momentum from supporters of Esperanto, promoting it as a universal language for our world.  Conceptually, this still sounds like a laudable goal.

Deservedly or not, nowadays one seldom (if ever) hears stories about it having impact. (more…)