(NOV) HOLIDAY BIRDS

November honors two birds, vastly different in makeup and purpose. One is most prominent on Veteran's Day. The other one stars on Thanksgiving Day. November was recently designated “National Peanut Butter Month,” but that is unlikely to have any effect on the traditional meal.

Back in the late 1700s, Benjamin Franklin thought the turkey was such a noble bird that he lobbied strongly for its selection as our national symbol. The other movers and shakers of that time couldn't see anything worthy about the turkey except as a food source. The majority favored a keen-eyed hunter that soared high above the earth – the bald eagle. The rest, as they say, is history.

Fast forward 200+ years and the bald eagle is bordering on extinction except in photos and graphic arts, but the turkey is alive and well, and with scientific breeding evolution has had its white meat enlarged, its tenderness enhanced, and it now poses as a great alternative for beef. Maybe old Ben's idea was just too far ahead of its time.

Of course, old baldy still maintains year-round top billing as our national symbol. He's a fierce looking, tough old bird with the unmistaken aura of one that is master of all he surveys. Have you ever tasted roasted eagle? Of course you haven't.

As the saying goes, “It's hard to soar with eagles when you hang out with a bunch of turkeys.”