I seem to see more wild turkeys this time of year. Maybe protest marching.

An important lesson learned this week while waiting on the Chappy side for the ferry. That big puddle that’s taken up residence near the ferry’s mouth, is comprised of a large quantity of corrosive clay or mud or something. Whatever it is, it’s not good for the body of one’s vehicle (probably not of great benefit to one’s body either, so resist the temptation for puddle frolicking. Yes, I’m talking to you Kevin). Kim discovered this fact after being passed by a large truck that displaced a large quantity of the puddle onto our white Volvo. Kim relates that the mud didn’t simply splash on the side of the car adjacent to the puddle, but rather rained like a rather unpleasant cloud burst over the whole of the car. Upon driving onto the ferry, Kim spoke with Brad Fligor, who suggested that she wash the car soon before she found herself driving only a chassis. Ever the Yankee, Kim gladly accepted the offer of neighborhood policeman Dave Rossi to wash for free behind the police station. As it turns out, the Edgartown police station is well equipped with soft, brushes soap and other accoutrements of car washing. However, it should be noted that this is a self-service car wash and should only be used in corrosive mud emergencies, lest any of of our neighbors erroneously assume that they could take their Range Rover there for free detailing. All’s well that ends well: Volvo got a much needed bath. And Kim warmed up her quads for yoga at the Y. She was a half hour late and as such had to shimmy her mat between those of two friends — not so much stretching so to avoid face slaps but lots of interior work. And oh, by the way, thanks Big Truck Driver. How thoughtful of you. That’s sarcasm (I don’t think emoticons are appropriate for a town column). Bitter sarcasm. Curses aren’t appropriate here either.

Isn’t it interesting that Chappy has a town column, though it is neither a town nor a column? I think it speaks to the force of Chappy’s personality that it requires it’s own space. As they say in football lingo “You can’t stop Chappy, you can only hope to contain it.” I imagine that once Martha’s Vineyard becomes its own nation, the capital house dome will be easily seen from its perch atop Sampson’s Hill.

I’m hoping that this publication hits the shelves in time for the following Thanksgiving Day advice: please leave unwanted items out of the stuffing. The bird stuffing should not be a clearinghouse for all the crazy things in the back of your fridge behind the baking soda and persimmon preserves. Pickles? No. Smoked trout? Unh-unh. Candied asparagus tips? No thanks. Even the dates and the figs and the turnips should be left out. A good rule of thumb might be: If I don’t regularly consume a food, then I won’t put it in my stuffing. Bread? Sure. Celery? Of course. Onion? I don’t see why not. Nothing more quickly spoils my thankful mood than trying to solve the mystery of the many-hued stuffing. Keep it simple. That’s what the pilgrims would have wanted. That, and the development of antibiotics, and the steam engine. Our native American friends? Fewer pilgrims.

But in the true, less cynical, spirit of Thanksgiving, I offer the following five, full-felt thanks (wish it was spelled fanks, but I’ll be thankful for the alliteration as given):

1. Family. All of them. Even the ones that start an embarassing story told at your expense with “You’ll find this funny . . . .”

2. Partners. That person you look at while they’re snoring at 2 a.m. and think, “I would kick them out of bed for eating crackers, but they look too peaceful to wake now.”

3. Chappy. We are blessed. By whatever energy, deity, or good luck that has bestowed such calming beauty and power and grace.

4. Our pet. Cat, dog, birds, miniature giraffe (I wish), etc. This is usually the one creature happy to see us regardless of our opinions on healthcare or our state of gastric distress.

5. Our Nation. Flawed. Proud. Confused. Silly. Assured. Resilient. Compassionate. Robust. Young. Ours.

Happy Thankgiving all.

And from the irrepresible CCC information font, Margaret Knight:

If you’re here on Saturday, stop in at the community center during the open house from 2 to 4 p.m. There will be hot cider and cookies, with a fire blazing, and a chance to meet your neighbors. The 2011 Chappy photo calendars will be available for pick up or to purchase. Also available will be the Chappy recollections book, cupcake cookbooks by an island author, knit items from Shirlee Miller, and Lily Morris’ photo cards.

The bimonthly potluck will be on Wednesday, Dec. 1 starting at 6 p.m. Fran and Bob Clay will be the hosts. Bring a main course or dessert dish to share. All are welcome. There will not be a potluck on Dec. 15, but on Wednesday, Dec. 8, the Ferry Captain Appreciation potluck will take place starting at 6 p.m.