Tidbits Grand Forks - November 20, 2014

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November 20, 2014

Of Grand Forks • East Grand Forks Published by: Wick Publications



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by Kathy Wolfe

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‘Tis the season, as they say, so this week, Tidbits is wondering just how much you know about the turkey, one of our favorite meals over the holidays. • The U.S. Department of Agriculture tells us that about 45 million turkeys will be cooked in America for Thanksgiving, about 17% of all the turkeys sold throughout the year. Close to 250 million turkeys are raised in the U.S. annually. • The Meleagris gallopavo is the wild turkey from which our domesticated turkey is descended. There are six subspecies of wild turkeys, including the Gallopavo silvestris, or forest turkey, the most numerous of all turkeys, more than five million birds. The turkey is the only poultry native to North America. • Because domesticated turkeys have been bred to have large breasts for cooking purposes, they are top-heavy and unable to fly. However, wild turkeys can fly as fast as 55 mph and they even roost in the treetops at night to avoid predators. Wild birds can also run up to a speed of 25 mph. The domestic bird will weigh about twice as much as the wild one. Turn the page for more!

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TURKEYS (continued): • During the 1930s, excessive hunting brought the wild turkey population down to about 30,000. A wildlife restoration project was instituted, and today, there are an estimated 7 million wild turkeys across the nation.


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Quiz Bits 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

6. Approximately, how many feathers are on the average adult turkey? 7. What’s the term for a one-yearWhich American holiday coincides old turkey? with Canada’s Thanksgiving Day? 8. What U.S. president is depicted What’s the official name for a in the oldest surviving phototurkey’s wishbone? graph of a president? How many calories are there in 9. How many von Trapp children 4 oz. of white turkey meat with were in the movie “The Sound of Music"? no skin— 118, 138, 158 or 178? What is the average weight for a 10. How many limbs does a squid have? turkey hen? TRIVIA T or F: Only male turkeys gobble.



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• Speaking of gobbling, in addition to the familiar gobble, a male turkey can make more than 30 different vocal sounds, including purrs, yelps, and kee-kees, distinctive and unique enough to be recognized by his fellow males. A gobble can be heard a mile away. Female turkeys aren’t nearly so vocal, usually making a clicking noise. • There are obvious differences in the outward appearances between males and females, with the male having a featherless bright red head and a body of red, bronze, and gold feathers. The female’s head is grayish-blue and her plumage is mostly a drab brown with a few feathers on the neck and head for camouflage. The adult male also has a beard, a cluster of feathers on the center of its breast, feathers than can be more than 7 inches long.

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• Are you familiar with all the turkey terms? That flap of skin that hangs over a turkey’s beak is known as a snood. Brightly-colored fleshy bumps on a turkey’s head and throat are called caruncles. Both the snood and caruncles turn bright red when the bird becomes frightened or agitated. The wattle, that flap of skin under the turkey’s chin, also changes to bright scarlet on a male in the midst of mating season. Although we frequently hear males referred to as toms, they are also known as gobblers, because of the distinctive noise they make to announce their presence to females. A baby turkey is known as a poult or a chick, and of course, the female is called a hen.

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TURKEYS (continued) • Turkey gender can also be determined in a rather unusual way – by observing their droppings. A male’s droppings are spiral-shaped, while a female produces droppings shaped like the letter J. • Turkeys have excellent hearing, able to determine sounds up to a mile away, but oddly enough, have no external ears. They hear through small holes in the head directly behind the eyes. The birds have periscopic vision, with eyes on the sides of the head, able to achieve a 360-degree field of vision. • The male turkey has sharp bony spikes on the back of its lower legs, used as a method of defense. You can determine a turkey’s age by measuring the length of these spurs. A oneyear-old can have spurs of 7/16”, while twoyear-olds’ spurs range from ½” to 15/16”. The spurs on a five-year-old turkey are from 1.5” to 2.25” in length. • During mating season, the male turkey fluffs out his feathers, fans out his tail feathers, and drags his wings when he walks. This little performance is called strutting. • When it’s time for the female hen to lay eggs, she’ll lay about 12 eggs at the rate of one per day in just under two weeks. Those eggs will incubate about 28 days before hatching.


• Although turkey is regularly served as a Thanksgiving mainstay, it’s unlikely that the Pilgrims dined on the bird at their first Thanksgiving feast in 1621. This three-day celebration was attended by 90 Native Americans and 53 Pilgrims, and written accounts of the menu mention “fowl,” which was probably duck or grouse, but turkey was not listed specifically.

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TURKEYS (continued): • George Washington was responsible for proclaiming the first nationwide celebration of thanks in America in 1789, but Thanksgiving wasn’t declared a national holiday until 1863, when Abraham Lincoln decreed the final Thursday in November as the official holiday.



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• What’s in that little plastic bag found in your turkey’s empty body cavity when you bring it home from the store? That bag contains the giblets, which are the turkey’s edible internal parts, including the gizzard, heart, liver, and neck. The gizzard is part of the turkey’s stomach, containing tiny stones that help grind up food in the digestion process. Some cooks chop up the giblets to add to the gravy or stuffing, but in all probability, most giblets end up in the dog’s dish!

NUGGET OF KNOWLEDGE You may have heard it said that eating turkey can make you drowsy. It's true that turkey meat contains an amino acid called tryptophan that the body uses in production of serotonin. Serotonin in turn helps us sleep. But turkey isn't alone in the tryptophan department. All meat has about the same amount, and cheddar cheese has even more, as do nuts and shellfish.

MOMENTS IN TIME • On Nov. 26, 1922, in Egypt's Valley of the Kings, British archaeologists become the first souls to enter King Tutankhamen's tomb in more than 3,000 years. Inside was a collection of several thousand priceless objects, including a gold coffin containing the mummy of the teenage king. • On Nov. 24, 1932, the FBI crime lab opens in Washington, D.C. The lab was chosen because it had the necessary sink. It was operated out of a single room with one full-time employee who began with a borrowed microscope. • On Nov. 27, 1942, French Admiral Jean de Laborde sinks the French fleet anchored off the southern coast of France to keep it out of German hands. Laborde ordered the sinking of eight cruisers, an aircraft transport, 30 destroyers and 16 submarines. • On Nov. 30, 1950, President Harry Truman announces that he is prepared to authorize the use of atomic weapons in order to achieve peace in Korea. At the time, communist China had joined North Korean forces in their attacks on United Nations troops, including U.S. soldiers in South Korea. © 2014 King Features Synd., Inc.

The History Channel

• On Nov. 29, 1963, one week after President John Kennedy was fatally shot while riding in a motorcade in Dallas, President Lyndon Johnson establishes a commission to investigate the assassination. The Warren Commission concluded that there was no conspiracy. In 1978, the House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded that Kennedy was "probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy" that may have involved multiple shooters and organized crime. • On Nov. 28, 1979, a New Zealand sightseeing plane traveling over Antarctica crashes, killing all 257 people on board, after the pilot descended to 1,500 feet. The pilot didn't know that his descent came right as the plane reached Mount Erebus, a 12,444-foot volcano. • On Nov. 25, 1980, Sugar Ray Leonard regains boxing's welterweight title when his opponent, reigning champ Roberto Duran, waves his arms and walks away from the fight in the eighth round. "No mas, no mas," Duran told the referee. "No more box."

• The meat of an older, larger male turkey is preferred over that of a younger bird, which is usually stringy and tougher. However, when it comes to female turkeys, the meat of a younger bird is better. • Benjamin Franklin favored the turkey as a symbol for America over the chosen bald eagle, saying, “I wish the bald eagle had not been chosen as the representative of our country; he is a bird of bad moral character; the turkey is in comparison a much more respectable bird…a true original native of America. Eagles have been found in all countries, but the turkey was peculiar to ours.”

Turkey Buying Tips

Whether you buy a fresh or frozen turkey, proper cooking and handling of the bird will ensure a delicious holiday meal. Here are some tips from the National Turkey Federation: • Purchase one pound of turkey per person to be served. This formula allows for the holiday meal plus a little left over for the prized turkey sandwich. • Ensure that the packaging is intact and avoid purchasing a bird with packaging that has rips or tears. • Save on supermarket specials by purchasing more than one turkey. A whole frozen turkey may be stored in your freezer for up to 12 months. • Select the size of turkey based on number of servings needed. There is no appreciable difference between female (hen) and male (Tom) turkeys in tenderness, white/dark meat ratio or other eating qualities. Hens typically weigh between 14 to 16 pounds and toms 15 pounds on up, so choose the size which best fits the number of dinner guests you expect. • Select alternative turkey cuts if you are having a small gathering for the holiday. Other turkey products that are readily available include a turkey breast, tenderloins, cutlets, drumsticks or thighs. Or ask your butcher to cut a whole fresh bird in two halves, roast one half and freeze the other half for a later occasion. Frozen Turkey: • Purchase during special value sales and store the bird in the freezer until the thawing time begins. • Store at 0 degrees F or below. • Thaw under refrigeration, in cold water, or in the microwave: Refrigeration: Allow approximately 24 hours per five pounds to thaw in the refrigerator. Cold Water: Allow approximately 30 minutes per pound to thaw in cold water, which is changed every 30 minutes. Do not use warm or hot water and be sure to change the water every 30 minutes. Microwave: Follow the microwave manufacturer’s directions and begin to roast the turkey immediately following the microwave process. Fresh Turkey: • Store at 26 degrees F and above. • Purchase for convenience because thawing is not required. Cost may be slightly higher due to special handling required by the store. 17th Ave. • Order in advance to be assured of availability. • Place fresh raw poultry in a refrigerator that maintains 40 degrees F and use it within the time frame on the Ave. 32 ndpackage label, or freeze the poultry at 0 degrees F.

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This week, Tidbits looks at four dynamic Canadian female vocalists who’ve all hit the charts in a big way. • Ontario country singer Shania Twain began life as Eilleen Regina Edwards, and was raised in near poverty. She was adopted by stepfather Jerry Twain, a member of the Ojibwa tribe, and took on the first name of Shania, said to be a translation from that language as “I’m on my way.” She began singing in bars at age 8 to help the family make ends meet, wrote her first song at age 10, and appeared on CBS television at 13. From her humble beginnings, Twain has gone on to have sales of 85 million albums, has earned five Grammy Awards, and has been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. • Although Ontario native Avril Lavigne is just 30 years old, she has already sold more than 30 million albums and 50 million singles. By age 16, she had already appeared on stage with Shania Twain, and had a $2 million recording contract in her pocket. She’s also a songwriter for other artists, having co-written the mega-hit “Breakaway” recorded by Kelly Clarkson. She has branched out into films, doing a voice-over for a character in the 2006 animated film Over the Hedge, and appeared in Fast Food Nation. She has two perfumes on department store shelves, and has launched her own clothing line, Abbey Dawn. Avril (whose name means April in French) gives back to the world through the foundation she founded that funds Easter Seals and Make-A-Wish, helping children and youth with serious illnesses.

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• Anne Murray paved the way for other female Canadian singers, as the first Canadian female to reach No. 1 on the U.S. charts. Her single “Snowbird” was one of North America’s most played songs of 1970, and earned her an American gold record, another first for a Canadian female. Born in Nova Scotia to a doctor father and a nurse mother, Anne began classical voice lessons at age 15, enduring a two-hour bus ride every Saturday. Yet she chose physical education as her major in college and taught P.E. at a Prince Edward Island high school for a year before giving it up to pursue her musical career. She’s had sales of more than 55 million records, won four Grammy Awards, 26 Juno Awards (Canadian music awards), and three CMA Awards. • Celine Dion is the best-selling Canadian artist of all time with record sales topping 200 million. The Quebec-born star got her start in her teens on French language albums. Her manager, who would later become her husband, mortgaged his house to finance her first record. Throughout the 1980s, she released a series of French albums, with her first English language album hitting North America in 1990. Those aren’t the only two languages she Dion can sing – she also sings in Spanish, Italian, German, Latin, Japanese, and Mandarin Chinese. She’s known her husband/manager since she was 12, when her mother sent him a demo tape. They began a relationship seven years later when she was 19 and he was 45. They now have three children. Dion has won five Grammy Awards, including the ever-popular “My Heart Will Go On,” the theme from the movie Titanic.

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What would Thanksgiving dinner be without cranberries? Here’s the lowdown on this little fruit, a member of the heaher family. • Cranberries grow on creeping shrubs and vines that are about 7 feet long and 2 to 8 inches in height. They flourish in sandy bogs and marshes, requiring at least a ton of vines per acre to plant a bog.

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• Just 5% of the cranberry crop is sold as fresh, with the other 95% turned into other products, such as juice and sauce. These little berries are ingredients in more than 1,000 food and beverage products sold.





• American novelist Edgar Rice Burroughs was the oldest war correspondent of World War II, flying with the 7th Air Force on bombing runs in the Pacific at the age • In September of 2007, a law of 66. was enacted in China that • Otters float while they made it illegal for a living sleep, and in order to keep Buddha to reincarnate without from floating away from each permission from the govern- other while dozing, they hold ment. So far there's no word hands. on what the punishment for • It's been reported that on breaking the law might be. his deathbed, noted French • Pretty much everyone has Enlightenment figure Volseen shellac on a piece of taire was enjoined by a priest furniture or perhaps a guitar to renounce Satan. The phi-- it's used to give wood that losopher is said to have adrich shine. You might be sur- monished the priest, saying, prised to learn that shellac is "Now, now, my good man. derived from a substance that This is no time for making is excreted by a tiny red insect enemies." found almost exclusively in *** the forests of Thailand. You might be even more surprised Thought for the Day: "Life to learn that shellac isn't just is to be lived. If you have found on wood; the next time to support yourself, you had you eat jelly beans or take a bloody well better find some bite of a bright-red apple you way that is going to be interbought in a grocery store, you esting. And you don't do that can thank the Kerria lacca in- by sitting around." -- Katharine Hepburn sect for that lovely shine. • It was beloved American author Mark Twain who made the following sage observation: "Always do right -- this will gratify some and astonish the rest."


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• The cranberry is one of three fruits native to North America, along with the Concord grape and the blueberry. Long before the arrival of Europeans to the New World, the Native Americans were using cranberries for food, as a dye for fabrics, rugs, and blankets, and for medicinal purposes. They mixed deer meat with mashed berries to make pemmican, a food that kept for long periods of time. The tribes’ medicine man used cranberries in a poultice to draw out poison from wounds. Some tribes called the little berries “sassamanesh,” while others named them “ibimi,” meaning “bitter berry.” When German and Dutch settlers arrived, they called them “crane berries,” because the plant’s blossoms looked like the head of a sandhill crane. The word “cranberries” is first recorded in 1647 in a letter written by John Eliot, who was a missionary to the Native Americans. Eliot, who was also the translator of the first Bible printed in America, asked in his letter, “Why are strawberries sweet and cranberries sour?”

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CRANBERRIES (continued): • There are about 1,000 cranberry growers in DEERE. the United JOHN States.DEERE. The state(continued): of Wisconsin is • the It was while living in Illinoisofthat John nonation’s No. 1 producer cranberries, ticed the problems farmers faced which when producing nearly 5that million barrels, attempting to till soil. Because the area had amounts to 60% of America’s crop. Other formerly been woodland, the soil was rich contributors to the supply are Massachusetts, with hummus, which clumped and clung to New Jersey, Oregon, and Washington. Britthe blades of the plows farmers were accusish Columbia is Canada’s leading producer, tomed to using. While repairing a broken circultivating the world’s cular saw, 20% Deereofstumbled uponcranberries. an idea. HeA lot of fruit ishisproduced in atotiny area –the if all of employed smith skills fashion steel North America’s cranberry bogs were put toblade into the shape of a plow. He affixed gether, they would encompass an the areadevice about two wooden spokes, then hitched the of Massachusetts’ Nantucket Island, to size a horse. It plowed the heavy Illinois soil just square In miles. like47 a charm. fact, a farmer who happened

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entire operation to Moline, Illinois. Ashamed

• The health cranberries many, of his ownbenefits lack of of education, Johnare sent his including preventing tract infections, children to the state’surinary finest schools. One of respiratory kidney and his proudestdisorders, days occurred when stones, son Charles earned the equivalent an MBA from Bell’s heart disorders. Their of proanthocyanidin conCommercial College in Chicago. tent and anti-carcinogenic components help thesongrowth several cancer cells, • inhibit With his Charlesofmanaging the company, TRIVIA especially colon and prostate cancer. Its John found time to pursue philanthropicantiinNEWSFRONT ANSWERS terests. He co-founded both the Nationoxidants may also contribute to aFirst healthy im1.and Eurythmics al Bank the First Congregational Church. mune system.


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Quiz Answers

Columbus Day 7. A jake 8. John Quincy The furcula Adams 158 calories 9. Seven 8 to 12 lbs. 10. Ten True 5,500


5. Freddy Krueger

• The original John Deere logo, registered in Thanks fora deer Reading 1876, depicted that was Tidbits! native to Africa. Thirty-six years later, in 1912, it was reALWAYS placed with the image ofFREE a North American white-tailed deer. In the decades that followed, the now-familiar “outline” logo took ALWAYS FUN over as the symbol of the John Deere brand. Information in the Tidbits® Paper is gathered from sources considered to be reliable, but the accuracy of all information cannot be guaranteed.

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Sports Answers 1. 5: K. AbdulJabbar, Karl Malone, Kobe Bryant, Wilt Chamberlain, & Shaquille O’Neal 2. 11 times (won 4) 3. False. Happened in 1911

4. Roger Clemens & Cy Young 5. 1990 6. 2003-04 season 7. Gordie Howe (1,767), Mark Messier (1,756)

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