When being called a 'turkey' may be a compliment

I’ve always been amused when I heard or read that someone or something was a “turkey” since in the contemporary vernacular it’s come to mean: “a person considered inept or undesirable” or “a failure, especially a failed theatrical production or movie.” Whoever started that descriptive modification certainly never hunted the wild feathered fowl of the same name. If they had, they’d be tempted to add the word “hunter” which might then more accurately match the more common definition that includes inept.



It’s not that all turkey hunters are inept, but rather that it sometimes seems that way when they’re confronted with a big wild gobbler with a PhD in “How to Make a Hunter Seem Inept.” What can drive an avid gobbler hunter to that nice white facility with padded wall rooms is the contradictory nature of this very large bird with a brain the size of a pea. This is the same bird that motorist have to brake for because it’s strutting around in the middle of a back road, but yet often stubbornly refuses to come within a township of the brain-superior hunter with an eye for roast turkey dinner.

Wildlife biologist who’ve spent years studying the wild turkey claim that its ability to send otherwise sane hunters to a luxury suite at the funny farm is due to “acquired instincts.” So is that another way of saying the wild turkey is the smart one while the hunter is the idiot? It sure seems that way sometimes. Now also I must consider that scientists who study insects claim that the cockroach?with a brain even smaller than the turkey’s?is capable of surviving almost every catastrophe, natural or manmade. So, does that mean that cockroach hunters often get “out-smarted” by the lowly roaches they’re after? And even more depressing to gobbler hunters is it often questions the notion that we are the superior species on this planet.


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