While the other turkeys in town “gobble gobble,” a local group of disabled turkeys puts the “wobble wobble” in this year’s Thanksgiving celebrations. The famed Turkey Trot, a beloved tradition for many, has inspired the first-ever alternate event for disabled turkeys whose gaits can’t quite be described as a “trot.” It’s the Turkey Stagger.
The race, which is designed to highlight the athletic prowess of those with unreliable limbs, featured one hundred turkeys in various stages of declining mobility. Tom Turkey, 32, has cerebral palsy. He said it was refreshing to participate alongside so many others who share his special disdain for exercise. He decided to sign up only after his Apple Watch activity tracker sent a notification asking if he was still alive.
Tom explained, “These steps should shut my watch up for a bit. And besides, it was pretty empowering to be among others who passionately complain about joint pain like me.” He likened his experience to struggling around the track during high school adaptive gym, but without the humiliation of being lapped by a neighborhood exercise group of octogenarians who coo about “how well you’re doing today!”
When asked what motivated him to finish the race, Tom cited the possibility of a year’s supply of Motrin. The coveted prize was awarded after he finished first, ushered across the finish line by the cheers of representatives from the area’s top orthopedic center who are eager to capitalize on injuries resulting from this foray into physical activity.
After collapsing into his waiting wheelchair, Tom emphasized that Thanksgiving is all about counting your blessings and remembering those less fortunate. “As I was dragging my leg over that finish line,” he remarked, pausing to wipe away a stray tear, “all I could think of was the able-bodied folks who have to ambulate on a regular basis. It can’t be easy, but they do it. That courage inspires me and keeps the meaning of the season in focus.”
Smaller bottles of Motrin were awarded to the second and third place finishers, as well as to the participant with the most artful mid-race wipe out. Tabitha Turkey, the winner of that unique honor, tripped over nothing and delighted onlookers with her stunning lack of balance.
Access-A-Ride was hired to scoop up those unable to finish the course but never showed up for the event. When reached for comment, CEO John Daniels provided this statement: “Access-A-Ride is committed to providing the highest level of service for all customers. We also strive to create an authentic experience, thus instructing our buses to move at the speed of the Mayflower’s voyage to Plymouth. We apologize if there was a misunderstanding and look forward to picking up our valued riders in several months.”
All race participants were treated to an afterparty in the medical tent, which featured an open mic session to gripe about post-race body aches. The organizers dedicated the inaugural event to the memory of the home exercise programs abandoned by disabled folks worldwide.