November 28, 2013 in City

Doug Clark: Professor Pilgrim weighs in on turnips, herbs and Apple bashes

By The Spokesman-Review

On the Web: Find an archive of previous columns by Doug Clark and others at columnists

Cover your giblets, ladies and germs. It’s time for another edition of America’s favorite Thanksgiving Day advice column: Ask Professor Pilgrim.

Before the professor starts addressing your concerns, we’ll take a moment like we always do to announce the following holiday closures:

Well, whataya know.

A rafter of money-grubber merchants is keeping the doors open on Thanksgiving this year.

Oh, wait a minute. There is one closure.

But everyone already knows about the Obamacare website tomfoolery.

So let the answering begin …

Q: By my calculations, this is the eighth year of Ask Professor Pilgrim. Any secret to explain such longevity?

A: No secret at all. It boils down to my three main attributes.

Q: Which are?

A: Sloth, fatigue and a chronic lack of ambition.

Q: For which we are all grateful. But let’s get back to Thanksgiving.

A: It’s about time.

Q: Half my dinner guests this year are rabid Cougar fans. The other half love the Huskies. Any advice on how to keep Apple Cup arguments from spoiling Thanksgiving?

A: Placing a chicken wire fence down the middle of the table should do the trick.

Q: It should stop the insults?

A: No. But it should stop the beer bottles that Wazzu football fans tend to start tossing whenever they get drunk.

Q: I heard that blustery weather could affect the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade this year. Is that true?

A: Yes. In fact, parade organizers already had to pull the Paula Deen float.

Q: Paula Deen has her own float?

A: It’s the really large one wearing a sheet.

Q: That’s a truly insensitive joke, Professor Pilgrim.

A: Why, thank you. Before we go any farther I’d like to give a shout-out to my pal Tom Sherry, the KREM-TV weather dude.

Q: Good idea. His annual Tom’s Turkey Drive brought in 11,000 turkey dinners this year. That’s amazing, huh?

A: Yes it is. I’m just glad that we all talked him out of the original charity idea he had.

Q: What was that?

A: Tom’s Turnip Drive.

Q: Yeah, nobody would have backed that one. By the way, Professor, do you have any thoughts on the perfect stuffing?

A: Sandra Bullock in that white dress she’s wearing on the cover of the latest “Entertainment Weekly” isn’t half-bad.

Q: No. Not that kind of stuffing. I meant: What’s your idea of the perfect turkey stuffing?

A: Well, any recipe will be a winner if it has enough of the right herb.

Q: Rosemary?

A: No. Mary Jane. You know, the herb Washington voters legalized.

Q: You’re saying you put pot in the turkey stuffing?

A: Professor Pilgrim has been known to put pot in his banana cream pie filling.

Q: But won’t that ruin the taste?

A: Perhaps. But it definitely makes the family a whole lot easier to tolerate.

Q: Speaking of dinner guests, what accommodations should I make for the vegetarians or vegans who show up?

A: The L&S method never fails.

Q: L&S?

A: “Lie and Serve,” if you must know.

Q: Are you saying you lie to your vegetarian guests about what they’re eating?

A: Sure. There’s nothing funnier than seeing a vegetarian scarf up the tofu (sausage) gravy.

Q: But what about the turkey?

A: Most people overcook their bird so much that it looks more like an old tire than meat.

Q: Point taken. But what if eating it makes a vegetarian sick?

A: Aw, nobody’s ever died from the turkey trots.

Q: How can you live with yourself, professor?

A: Easy if you’ve got enough pie filling.

Doug Clark can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or

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