Outside Looking In
We will soon be loosening our belts, placing both hands on our belly and uttering those famous words following a large Thanksgiving feast "Why did I eat so much?"
Then we will lay down on the couch and take a nap. And when we wake up, we will again utter the same thing we say after a nap every year ... "Is there pie?" When will we ever learn?
Speaking of learning, I thought I knew almost everything about Abraham Lincoln since I have been an avid collector of Lincoln paraphernalia for year. But I just became aware that a proclamation by Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national "day of Thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens," to be celebrated on the last Thursday of November. In the latter half of the 1800s, Thanksgiving was frequently referred to as "Turkey Day", and in 1885, Congress made the celebration a paid federal holiday for all U.S. workers."
Despite history making us believe the Pilgrim's included turkey part of the 1621 feast at Plymouth Colony, descriptions of the three-day feast shared by Pilgrims and local Native Americans included wild fowl, deer, and local vegetables, but there was no mention of turkey.
The traditional image of a Thanksgiving feast, which includes a turkey stuffed with dressing and other food, didn't take hold until around 1889 when renowned author Jane Austin penned a fictitious account of that 1621 feast in her book "Standish of Standish: A Story of the Pilgrims." From then on, we have associated Thanksgiving with turkey.
I also recently learned of some interesting turkey facts. Many of you may already know this, but did you know that a male turkey is a tom or gobbler, a young male is a jake, female turkeys are hens, a young female is a jenny, and babies are a poult or chick?
President John F. Kennedy issued the first presidential pardon of a turkey, that coming on Nov. 19, 1963. President George H.W. Bush in 1989 made the pardoning ceremony an official tradition.
Experts say predict that 88 percent of Americans will eat turkey this year, and they wil consume about 46 million birds at a cost of over $900 million.
No wonder we need a nap.
And speaking of naps, is it turkey that makes us drowsy after a Thanksgiving feast, or the fat that we ate too much?
Sleepiness and drowsiness are connected with certain hormones and amino acids in our body. For example, turkey contains the amino acid tryptophan which has been linked to sleep and drowsiness.
Others say it is not the turkey that makes people sleepy. Rather, it is attributed to simply having a large meal which causes a significant portion of blood flow to be directed to the stomach and intestines to aid in digestion, which in turn, causes you to feel fatigued.
I always felt it was just plain exhaustion from shoveling the food into my mouth so fast.
Fruin a winner
Minneota volleyball coach Hayley Fruin has been head coach here for five years now. In those years, she has guided the Vikings to state titles in 2018 and 2019, while placing second in the state in 2017 and 2021.
While capturing first place is better than finishing second, finishing second is better than all the rest of the Class A teams in the state finished.
Mayer Lutheran deserved to win the state title. It wasn't because the Vikings played poorly and it wasn't that the officials made some bad calls. This was the Crusaders' day, just like it was Minneota's day in 2018 and 2019. They won those two years because they were the better team.
Fruin was gracious in defeat after the championship match, alluding to the fact that her players gave it everything they had but that the opponent "brought their 'A' game" on Saturday.
Minneota is fortunate to have someone like Fruin coaching these young girls.
Question of the Week
Here is a question I have received more than once this year in person or via email.
Question: How do you pick your Athlete of the Week? You picked someone recently that was not the best player in the game ... Note: I was also informed by someone that a certain athlete that I will not name should have been picked three or four times this year. Also, some people think AgPlus personnel pick Athlete of the Week since they are the sponsor for that honor.
My answer: I do not ask coaches who they feel should be picked as they have enough to do already. Also, AgPlus also has nothing to do with the selection process. They have been gracious enough to sponsor the weekly honor. It is solely my choice and is not always based on statistics. But once someone is selected Athlete of the Week, my rule is that they can't be picked again in that same sport. That gives more people a chance to be picked. I also try to select a boy one week and a girl the next, if possible, to be fair.
Was person satisfied with my response?: No.