Daily Dirt: Does anyone really eat sweet potatoes?

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Daily Dirt for Sunday, Nov. 13, 2022

Why do we even need sweet potatoes? Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 448 of The Daily Dirt.

1. I’m 68 years old and zeroing in on 69. I have never eaten a sweet potato, nor do I have any desire to. If I want a potato, I want a traditional spud — mashed, fried or French-ed.

I’ve often wondered if anyone actually eats sweet potatoes, or are they considered a part of a Thanksgiving meal simply for decorative purposes? Maybe it’s just me, but I never hear any culinary talk about sweet potatoes outside of the season surrounding Thanksgiving — yet I find that the nation’s intake of these off things in on the rise.

In 2000, the average American consumed about 4.2 pounds of sweet potatoes per year. Today that number is up to 6.7 pounds. (By the way, over half of all sweet potatoes produced in a year are grown in North Carolina – about 1.9 billion pounds.)

Of all the Thanksgivings I have been a part of, I can never remember anyone actually eating one of those oddly colored orange sweet potatoes. Sure, my grandma and mom always used to serve them, but I don’t remember anyone ever consuming one.

Concerning traditional potatoes, the United States produces almost 50 billion pounds of them each year to fry, mash, bake and boil. Yes, I have and will continue to consume those.

2. Here are three thoughts that pretty well sum up Thanksgiving:

  • Gold medal: “Thanksgiving is an emotional time. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they see only once a year. And then discover once a year is way too often.” — The late Johnny Carson, longtime host of the NBC “Tonight Show.”
  • Silver medal:“You know that just before the first Thanksgiving there was one wise old Native American woman saying, ‘Don’t feed them. If you feed them, they’ll never leave.’” — humorist Dylan Brody. (Actually, quite true, eh?)
  • Bronze medal: “Thanksgiving dinners take 18 hours to prepare. They are consumed in 12 minutes. Football halftimes take 12 minutes. This is not coincidence.” — Erma Bombeck. (Nailed it, Erma. Absolutely nailed it.)

3. One of the Thanksgiving traditions is having the Dallas Cowboys featured in one of the marquee games that day. For those wondering what the Cowboys’ all-time Turkey Day record might be, it is 31-21-1.

The Detroit Lions, however, have the most Thanksgiving victories with 37. But they’ve also lost 42.

The only team to have never played on Thanksgiving? That would be the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Steve Thought O’ The Day
For those who might be wondering, the Cowboys and Lions have never played each other on Thanksgiving.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. C’mon, Steve. You’ve gotta try at least one sweet potato. You can even cover it in butter and sugar and cinnamon if you wish. They’re not that bad.

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