At America's first Thanksgiving, if you looked around the table you could be sure that someone there caught the bird, someone killed the bird and someone cooked the bird.
But today, it seems that all we can be sure of is that someone--and all their friends and family--is going to eat the bird. More than ever, Americans are gracing their Thanksgiving tables with feasts prepared by, and purchased from, nearby restaurants or grocery stores.
Establishments report a steady increase in appetite for the take-out turkey meal with all the trimmings . . . and none of the early morning fuss. While businesses report a range of consumer interest, one Bristol Farms store said its Thanksgiving day prepared-meal sales have jumped 62% in the last three years.
"The traditionalist might say you are cutting corners," said Louis Fajardo, store director at Bristol Farms in South Pasadena. "You actually are, but it's a great deal."