Sam has a problem: his dad doesn’t think he’s “man enough.” So Dad decides he’s going to toughen Sam up by getting a turkey to raise in preparation for Thanksgiving. But no one is prepared for the place Travis the turkey finds in the family, and Sam soon realizes the frightening truth: it’s him, or the turkey. A short story from the acclaimed collection Guys Read: Funny Business, edited by Jon Scieszka.
ne night in the fall of fifth grade my dad finally got fed up with me and decided it was time to make me a man. Translation: My dad thought I was positively girly and was worried that I’d get bullied once I got to middle school the next year. He had been appalled earlier that day to see that only girls had been invited to my eleventh birthday party, and that night he glared at me all through dinner as I nibbled on a tofu burger (I’d been a vegetarian since the third grade, when I bit into an unbelievably purply, bloody Chicken McNugget at McDonald’s), before finally announcing, “That’s it, I’m making you my special project, Sam. We’re going to right this ship starting tomorrow.”