Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, the day when over 46 million turkeys will take center stage at dinner tables all over the USA. Missing from this impressive count will be two lucky birds - Cobbler and his even luckier spare Gobbler, who were today pardoned by none other than President Obama! Instead, they will happily cackle away their lives on George Washington's Mt. Vernon Estate in Virginia.
The fortunate 19-week old male birds that weigh a robust 40 pounds hail from Rockingham County, Virginia. And, though they looked alike and even share a birthday, they both apparently have very unique personalities - While Cobbler, best known for his strut, craves cranberries, the patient and rather arrogant Gobbler, prefers to nibble on corn. Their differences are even more apparent in their taste in music - Cobbler likes R&B artist Carly Simon, while Gobbler leans more toward the classical side, preferring any music from a fiddle!
Now in its 65th year, the turkey pardoning tradition is believed to have been started by President Truman. However, it was not until 1989 that George Bush established it as an annual White House tradition. Also, the original clemency was granted to only one bird - However, after a naughty one named Liberty escaped before being pardoned by President Ronald Reagan, there began a new tradition of bringing in an heir and a spare!
This year, President Obama added another fun aspect to the ritual, by asking the general public to vote on Facebook, which one of the two, Cobbler or Gobbler, should be picked to be pardoned. Cobbler it turned out got outvoted by a slim margin! Not that it mattered to Gobbler, who still managed to escape from the dinner table!
Not only that, both turkeys got to arrive in Washington D.C. in a special first class cabin two nights prior to the ceremony, and spend the time in a beautiful suite at the city's swanky W Hotel, where they dined on acorns, berries and corn.
Following the ceremony, the two left for their permanent home, where they will both impress visitors until January 6th, 2012, before settling into their custom-built home! We wish Cobbler and Gobbler a long and healthy life. As for the rest of their flock? All we can say is GOBBLE GOBBLE!
HAVE A HAPPY AND SAFE THANKSGIVING!
Resources: Huffingtonpost.com, obamafoodarama.com