Acknowledging the Huge Turkey in the Room

It was staring at me the whole time. Right there, right smack middle
of the table. It glistened. It was big. It was stuffed. It was begging
my name. I just couldn’t do it. I knew it was wrong. But what was I
supposed to do? The urge just took hold of me and I couldn’t hold
back. I knew as a vegan it would taunt me about my life choices but I
couldn’t let it win. I stabbed that turkey with my fork and took a bite.

It was my Uncle Jerry who voted Trump. His sweat glistened from the
excessive maneuvering of his arms; his armpits stained with the
constant standing and sitting to reach over plates and for sides at
the ends of the table. He was full of turkey and potatoes, stuffed to
the gills with cranberry sauce and ham. He was huge– and he didn’t
mind yelling at me for being a millennial meat hater.

But I just couldn’t resist. I had to ask. All my bitterness and angst
had lasted until this moment and it just blew out.

“So who did you vote for?”

The words came out. The table, also filled with Trump supporters, went
silent. The turkey sat there, bones and all.

Uncle Jerry smirked at the sides of his mouth. “Well honey, this just goes to show
that you young kids need to learn some respect around here. Trump is a
man of great honor and a very smart man. Very smart. He owns bigly
amounts of property and money.”

I stared at the turkey chunks stuck between his teeth. His sweat
rolling down his cheeks; his glasses ever so slightly slipping from
his nose.

“Well why do you hate Mexicans and women and blacks and LGBTs and
abortion and the poor and–”

My mouth kept spewing but I wasn’t looking at my uncle anymore. I was watching that turkey. I didn’t know what was happening but that turkey kept looking at me with chilly indifference.

Now, all I have to show for my valiant stance against bigotry is a tupperware full of leftover poultry. I don’t even want it. I’m a vegan, remember?

By: Cat Gioino