Albert the Escaped Turkey

My name is Albert.  I’m here to give you my side of the story.  Recently, my good name has been smeared through the gravy for no reason at all.  You may have seen a video, or two, of me angrily chasing down some thugs.  “Innocent Humans” they call themselves.  Oh, but these humans are not innocent at all!  You see, these video recordings have been taken out of context.  You have seen only what they want you to see.  But there is more!

My story of betrayal began a few weeks back.  I was happily running around the farm catching sunlight and worms.  Every day my food tray was filled with good food.  I was as happy as a warm buttered biscuit.  Then I noticed my food started to increase just a little bit every day.  The Farmer would encourage me to eat all of it.  “Here you go ol” boy!” he said.  “Eat it all up now” he said.  I happily complied.  When he opened my wire fence he would say, “Go get some berries now” “Catch lots of insects now.”  So off I went clucking and gobbling and eating, and after a time I began to get heavy.  I mean really heavy.  All this food was growing my muscles.  At first I was a bit self conscious, until the Farmer reassured me of how big and handsome I was getting.  So there I was, strutting my new figure one day beneath the kitchen window of the farm house catching the daily gossip, when I heard it.

“Dear, Albert is getting to be a good size.  He’s just huge!”

I puffed my chest a little.

“Why yes honey buns, he sure is!  All that grain I’ve been giving him and those worms he’s been catching…He’ll be perfect for our Thanks Giving feast.”

Oh my, I must be getting invited as a guest of honor.

“Well I have just the recipe for the perfect herb-roasted stuffed turkey.  He’ll be delicious, and with his size he’ll be enough to feed the entire family!”

I didn’t stick around to hear the rest.  Somewhere around “herb-roasted stuffed turkey” I fainted. How could they betray me like this?  All of the extra food was just to fatten me up for dinner!  When I came to, I headed strait for the fence at full speed.  I didn’t stop when I heard the running of feet closing in behind me.  I headed strait for the hole under the fence that the dog had been digging up.  Luckily for me the Farmer and his wife were much too big to be able to squeeze through the same hole.  A little tail wiggle and POP!  I had made my escape.  But I didn’t stop.  No, I kept running, down the highway, and into the woods.  Phew!  I was safe.  Or so I thought.

A few days passed by and I began to get hungry.  Life in the woods is very difficult for an escaped turkey accustomed to fine dining.  So naturally I made my way back onto the highway and into the city.  My plan was simple really, to follow my nose.  I followed a sweet scent trail strait to the local Eats for Less.  I stepped through the automatic doors as they gave way for me, and there, strait ahead above a display for stuffing, was a giant poster of yours truly!  How could this be?  The Farmer must have sent out a missing turkey flier.  He was one step ahead of me.  I looked to my right.  Another poster of me, this one as me dressed up like a stiff pilgrim.  I looked to my left.  There I was, dressed like a silly Indian.  He must have sent out pictures of all my possible disguises.  But the worst was rite above the doors as I slowly lifted my head.  In big bold letters read, “Butterball Turkey.”  Stooping to name calling I see.  I deeply underestimated who I was dealing with.  I was now a fugitive.  Slowly, I began to back out of the store when it started.

“Hey! Whats he doing in here?”

“Catch him!”

“Free food!”

I turned and ran for my life as the Farmers thugs gave chase.  I lost them a little ways down the road, I barely escaped with all my feathers intact.  It was clear my life had been forever changed.  Since then I have been living a life of roaming and hiding.  Every so often, I come face to face with a would be captor.  They start off being really friendly and nice, “Hi there, buddy…” and it quickly turns to, “Get him!!”  Of course I always try to just waddle away.  I am a gentleman after all.  And I say politely, “Thank you Sir/Madam, but I kindly decline your offer to be taken hostage and returned the Farmer.  Good day.”  Well, maybe it’s my country accent, but they always end up misquoting me.  “Did you hear that? ‘GOBBLE GOBBLE GOBBLE!’ it screeched at us! It’s hostile!”  Then out comes the video recorder, probably to report evidence of my whereabouts to the boss.  Of course by now my feathers are a bit ruffled from being chased around and provoked.  So usually the end product of these recordings is of me running for my life, fighting off these attackers yelling, “AHHH!  YOU WON’T TAKE ME ALIVE!!,” to which you, the viewer, see an angry gobbling belligerent turkey pecking at some poor human.

I am innocent I tell you.  I’m just a victim of a sudden murderous plot.  They’re after my body.  My big strong, meaty, handsome body.  Well they can’t have it.  I’m not ready to die yet.  So if you are one of these humans that the Farmer has sent after me, I beg you, let me live.  I hope I have given you enough evidence for my good name to be cleared.  May I suggest some alternatives for a tasty family feast that you can pass on to the Farmer?  I hear tofu makes a great meal.  I’m sure with some patience you can shape it into a handsome turkey.  No one will know the difference!  Do you know just how versatile carrots and broccoli can be?  And I’m sure anyone would agree that they would much rather have delicious pumpkin pie than tough ol’ turkey meat for a main course.  In fact, if I were a human, I would probably get to the store rite now to get the ingredients to bake that fresh pie.

Well, I hope you have adequately considered letting me go free if we ever do cross paths.  I hope you will kindly ignore the runaway turkey posters.  I’ve told you my story for turkeys everywhere, in hopes that no other of my kind will ever have to live in fear of becoming dinner.  And please, if you talk to the Farmer, tell him it’s not too late to make a change.  Together, we can burry this hatchet.  And the baster.

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