Happy Thanksgiving From TTAG

happy thanksgiving wild turkey hunting

courtesy sportingchef.com

Whether you got your bird with a well-placed load of No. 5 shot from 15 yards or from the freezer case at your local store, have a happy and a healthy Thanksgiving. TTAG will be on a reduced posting schedule this long holiday weekend as we spend more time than usual in meatspace with friends and family.

We’re all blessed in this country, some more than others. Keep people like those affected by the fires in California and others who may be having a tough time in your thoughts.

We’ll be putting up some classic content from years past for your entertainment and edification when the proximity to all those in-laws and cousins gets to be a little too much. Enjoy.


  1. avatar Craig in IA says:

    Turkey on the table this year came from the grocery store, put it together around 5:30 this morning. Little bro and I did go out and whack some pheasants yesterday at a friend’s farm. Birds have been tough in Iowa for a while but he’s got 40 acres of prairie and all the corn and beans around it are in. GSP had a blast, we were flushing birds off her points 2-4 at a time, better than the old days. Half of the walk was with open guns watching her point and kicking them up- we’d already gotten enough.

    I’m very thankful for many things this year, and I’d like to pose a question put forth by Jeff Cooper some years back to those who feel they are “thankful” but believe in no Creator: If no God- to whom, or what are you thankful? (Unfortunately, many won’t even “get it”.)

    Me, I’m certain. I hope this nation’s blessing extend to everyone.

  2. avatar The Rookie says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

    (And happy 40th anniversary to one of the greatest moments in TV sitcom history)

    1. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

      I’ll second both sentiments.

      1. avatar Geoff "Mess with the bull, get the horns" PR says:

        “As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly…”

        *snicker* 😉

        1. avatar jwm says:

          And they could fly. It was the landing they weren’t so good at. A car windshield is a lousy landing zone.

    2. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Yep. Gotta’ love Les Messman. Happy T-Day to everyone!

  3. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    worked a double yesterday, only eight today and tomorrow.
    bird is brined, slathered and probed.
    i’m good with the cran glut; tossed the romaine.
    mom is 90, she’s bringin’ the wild rice stuffing.
    happy turk day.
    i don’t have the patience to holler for gobblers, but i enjoy futzing with my call box.
    the guys in the barn are all animated about the annual turkey testicle festival in huntley. good times.

      1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

        thanks for that. yeah, i was unclear; i meant tossed it into the trash bin.
        love me some spinach/ iceberg/ red.

  4. avatar Ansel Hazen says:

    The accepted recipe up in these parts for cooking wild turkey is the put the bird in a pot with a rock. When done toss the bird and eat the rock.

  5. avatar H says:

    Isn’t 6.5 best for Turkey?

    Happy Family time y’all!

    1. avatar BLAMMO says:

      Best for anything and everything. Makes everything else obsolete, including birdshot.

      Happy Thanksgiving to all.

  6. avatar Elaine D. says:

    I’m Buddhist, hate turkey and don’t celebrate American holidays.

    But I’m deeply grateful for everyone and everything in my life including all you crusty old salts on TTAG.

    1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

      sun party or tree party?

      1. avatar Elaine D. says:

        Haha, neither. I’m at the ocean eating seafood. Turkey doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to Vietnamese people. We’re like…what is that, it doesn’t taste that good. But here is some nice chicken and shrimp for you!

        If you’ve ever been to VN you know that a typical line of inquiry when you try to get a meal is “why you eating that. No, you don’t eat that one. You eat this one.” This is 1000 times worse when it is your Vietnamese family running the restaurant. You just have to give up and hope that whatever they serve you is something your wimpy American palate can tolerate.

        1. avatar Toby says:

          It’s hard to find a decent Asian restaurant where I live, everything is so “Americanized” it doesn’t make sense to me.

        2. avatar Elaine D. says:


          Just find an Asian family to adopt you. We love to do that. And we are pretty much all total food snobs so part of you being an “adoptee” is your mandatory attendance at food driven family events.

          Also: if the Asian restaurants in your area are actually run by Asian people, tell them you don’t want what’s on the menu but you want them to make you something like what they eat “at home.” You will get some amazing surprises that way. Be prepared!

        3. avatar Sam I Am says:

          What the hell is Nuoc Nam sauce, anyway?

          Went to an “authentic” Vietnamese restaurant, once. Cook staff was Chinese, wait staff were Thai, table cloths were plastic with pringed red and white squares, music was Dolly Parton and Charlie Pride, Willie, Waylon, and The Boys.

        4. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          roong petch opened here in ’76. now we have dozens of thai places. vietmanese (i know) is close, a good bahn mi is worth three fifty. if you dig deep at archer and wentworth you will find that the chine eat some wild ass stuff. flowers and bugs.
          i can’t find the insect menu, but here is a slapdash translation of one of the locals, elaine ain’t kiddin’:


          plus, there’s argyle st.

        5. avatar Elaine D. says:


          Well, I’ll tell you what it is but you’ll probably never want to eat it after I do.

          Nuoc mam means “fish sauce” or “fish water.” Basically it’s the brine from lots of little fish, kind of like anchovies, that get caught and then fermented in a barrel. The liquid that gets drawn off is the stuff that gets bottled. The best nuoc mam actually comes from an island that part of my family is from off the Mekong Delta, Phu Quoc. Also known for pearls.

          Nuoc mam is one of those “umami” flavors. Viets either use it as a garnish, a dipping sauce or to finish off a dish right at the end of cooking, such as at the end of a clay pot dish. A lot of professional chefs consider Vietnamese cuisine to be one of the most “balanced” in terms of flavor profile because a plate usually includes a starch, a protein, fresh stuff with herbs and spices, and an umami element. Add that to the mix of French influence and it’s pretty amazing stuff, and cheap and easy to make once you understand the basic premises. Healthy too.

          But yea. The fish sauce is a deal breaker for some whose palates just can’t get used to it.

      2. avatar Elaine D. says:


        Yeah….should have specified that if you ask an Asian person for a “home style” dish, to ask that they avoid the freaky proteins that Americans don’t eat. They will generally do that anyway but it’s still a good idea to say something.

        A good friend went to Beijing for the Olympics. Said there was a mile of food stalls outside the stadium or whatever. Rat on a stick. Dog on a stick. Bugs on a stick. He walked the entire mile 2 or 3 times and couldn’t get up the nerve to try any of it. He went back to his hotel and ate Kung pao chicken, and he’s a vegetarian. And we are talking this guy was a Vietnam vet and a Purple Heart and a brave man.

        They had mealworm dishes in Namibia. It’s a thing. Couldn’t do it. Nope nope. Never got hungry enough. Held out for gas station kudu stew and took my chances.

    2. avatar CZ Peasy says:

      And your appreciation of baseball is similar to that of James Hodgkinson?

      1. avatar Elaine D. says:

        Haha! No, I was trained as a gunshooter by hardcore operators who are saving me up as a backup plan for the zombie uprising. (Uprising? Revolution?) They have forbidden me to attend sporting events, it’s a bad influence.

    3. avatar Frank says:

      Then get back to work.

  7. avatar former water walker says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to everyone at TTAG! Ff

  8. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    Nothing quite like Wild Turkey and I’m talking the roast bird not the drink,not that their is anything wrong with the drink either.

  9. avatar Ogre says:

    Happy Turkey Day, everybody! Am going to a restaurant with my lady friend for turkey dinner – let somebody else sweat the prep and cleanup! I’m thankful for my family and friends, and for living in a relatively free part of this great country. Beats the alternative.

    Elaine, I remember dining on Vietnamese cuisine when I was over there in 1968-69. Lots of vegetables and pork, and in particular, I remember those little hot green peppers that we called “firecrackers.” One drop of the juice would send a guy running to the river! We ate dog, too. In my unit we used to have a fat little yellow mongrel puppy, and one day he disappeared. Next day we were invited to the village chief’s for dinner and guess what was on the menu? Young tender boiled puppy! Didn’t taste bad, in a chicken sort of way. However, I am thankful that the Vietnamese pho shops around here don’t serve it!

    1. avatar Elaine D. says:


      Oh! You were there at the time I got born over here. My mom left Saigon right after the Tet Offensive.

      That was wartime…people ate a lot of stuff then that they don’t now because they just had to then. Thankfully you don’t see dog and rat and so forth any more. VN is quite the place for food travelers now – you literally walk out your door and every five feet there is a stall selling something amazing for a dollar, no dogs or rats or bugs. Poor puppy!!!!

      1. avatar Ogre says:

        Thanks for the clarification on today’s Vietnamese cuisine, Elaine. There are a lot of Viet restaurants in N. Virginia – maybe I’ll check them out. Another thing I remember is nuoc mam – the fish sauce made from fermented fish pieces. It could get pretty pungent, and I was told that the older and more pungent it was, the more valuable it was. It was something Americans over there either loved or hated – I belonged to the latter group and won’t touch it to this day. I later found out that there was an ancient Roman fish sauce called garum, made the same way. I have an “adopted-for-the-modern-kitchen” edition of Epicius’s 1st c. A.D. Roman cooking, and I won’t do the dishes that include garum. Otherwise, I like the poultry dishes just fine.

        I was stationed at Camp Pendleton CA back in 1975 when the big Viet refugee group reached our shores and were put into tent camps at the north end of CamPen. We worked to screen them to make sure no bad actors got into this country. There were incredible stories of bravery by those determined to escape communist domination in Vietnam. Made me appreciate more what we had/have in this country .Many of the refugees brought amazing amounts of gold sewn into their clothing, and dealers from LA arrived every day to buy it. Later, they scattered around the country to start their new lives. When I was stationed at Yorktown VA, there was a seafood restaurant in town that had a Viet maître ‘d, and I later found out he was a former S. Viet LtGen who wasn’t too proud to work at any job he could find here. Anyway, nothing to do with guns or Viet food, but I couldn’t resist.

  10. avatar RGP says:

    Screw turkey, I got up at midnight and put briskets on the pit.

    1. Now there’s a good man. Anyone can roast (or smoke or fry) a bird, but brisket takes commitment.

  11. avatar Southern Cross says:

    The only Turkeys in my part of the world are the awful movies and TV shows that start getting broadcast at this time of the year. Thank heavens for the options available from the internet: Forgotten Weapons and C&Rsenal.

    So have a drumstick and a sip for myself and others in this part of the world.

  12. avatar possum says:

    I do not celebrate human holidays . However I do appreciate the left overs that make their way to the trash dumpster. … A question ask comes to mind every Thanksgiving. A grring card holder I worked with asked me “why Thanksgiving”? I replied ” The white settlers back east hit hard times and were starving to death.The injuns brought in food and fed them.Then the whites slaughtered the whole damn bunch, that’s why we celebrate Thanksgivin”. The bewildered look on mi amigos face I found amusing

    1. avatar Craig in IA says:

      And that story concerning the first American colonist Thanksgiving is total BS.

      The bounty and resultant celebration occurred the fall after the commune-forced colonists were allowed their own land, allowed to do what ever they wanted with their bounty rather than “donate” it to the common stores of the settlement, and prosper if they worked hard. Probably the first proof of the power of captialism in the world, certainly on this continent. You can get a synopsis of it here or probably 100 different postings on the web.

      http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1742553/posts I’m sure some of the rocket scientist around here will doubt it due to the source but it’s easily proven through Bradford’s documents.

  13. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    Dinner was great. Just me and the wife. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!
    Please be safe when you travel.

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