I Still Cannot Figure Out Hand Turkeys

Hand Turkey Drawing

I cannot for the life of me figure out how to draw these hand turkeys. I know I start by putting my hand on the paper. I got that. Then I pick up a pencil. Easy. Then I put the pencil on the paper, lead first. Obvious, I know, but right after this is where I just get totally lost.

I start drawing a line up the side of my hand. I get to the top of the pinky, go around it, down to that little skin web in between my fingers, and, oh shoot! I did it again. Instead of a hand turkey, I accidentally drew a mural of Christopher Columbus killing Native Americans. Gah! Why do I always do this?

Okay, this time I’ll try putting the pencil on the paper first, then my hand. I have no idea if that will help but it sounds turkeylicious. Alright. Pencil down. Hand coming in, sidling up next to the pencil, slowly, slowly, got it. Start moving the pencil, so far so good. Hmm. This line would make a fine tail feather. I honestly think my favorite part of hand turkeys are the feathers. They’re so big and colorful. Like a rainbow you can murder, fill its butt with carrots, and eat! Truly a remarkable creature. Wait, I can’t get distracted from tracing my hand. Otherwise it’ll turn into – great. A historically poignant diptych. Just great. On the left we have Pilgrims being fed, clothed, and guided through the New World by a Native American tribe. On the right we have Pilgrims beating, enslaving, and trading those very same Native Americans for corn. I can’t believe this!

All I want is to celebrate a cherished and completely fabricated American holiday centered around competitive eating. But instead of creating fun little hand turkeys, I end up exposing the shameful truth that Americans have kept hidden inside gourds, pies, and stupid looking paper hats. I’m sorry, I’m really not woke. I’m just a guy trying to draw a hand turkey.

What if instead of moving the pencil around my hand, I keep the pencil still and just move my hand? I know, it sounds stupid. But at this point I would literally do anything to draw one decent hand turkey.

Alright. Pencil down. Hand down. Start moving the hand, okay, okay, keep going. You have no idea how weird this feels but I think it might actually work. Made it around the pinky, keep going, up the ring finger, over the top and around, nice! I got two feathers so far, starting on a third. I don’t want to jinx myself, but this might be the one!

Before I keep going I do want to clarify one thing. When I said earlier that I’m not woke, I actually am woke. Like, woke enough to know I shouldn’t say the N-word when I’m listening to rap music around others, but not so woke that I don’t rap the N-word when I’m by myself. So I know about Indigenous People’s Day. I’m all for it. But can’t I support human rights and be festive at the same time? I’m sure indigenous people enjoy being decorative too, and if one of them wanted to make a hand turkey, I’d say, “Sure, Chief! I’d Nava-hold you back from drawing some finger poultry.”

Son of a bitch. I was this close to finishing my bird and it happened again. Somehow, without even moving the pencil, I managed to draw several historical maps that show the sequestration of Native American-owned land as a result of Caucasian subjugation. How could I let this happen?!

What if I try putting down the back of my hand? Gonna crank this out and, goddammit. I drew a fresco of Washington Crossing the Delaware except the water in the Delaware is replaced with the more historically accurate Native American blood and the painting’s title is changed to Washington Splashing Around in the Blood of the Innocent.

I think I’ve been going too slow. The pencil has too much time to wander around. I’m gonna try this one as fast as I can.

Jesus Christ! All that did was make me draw more horrors. Now I’m looking at three young Pilgrims with muskets chasing a Native American child off a cliff. I’m sorry!

Maybe I need to try another pencil. Got a mechanical one here. And…nope. I’m not even gonna tell you what I drew. Let’s just say it’s two people hanging out and one of them is doing something that rhymes with scalping. I mean rhymes with…goddammit.

I’ll just try drawing a hand turkey from memory, without tracing. That takes out the influence factor, right?

Apparently not. I barely touched the pencil to the paper and what comes out? White guys in suits whipping a group of Native Americans who are building a combination Taco Bell/Bank of America directly on top of an ancient Native American burial ground. Is nothing in this world sacred? Am I but a cog in the evil machine of American white patriarchy?

I give up. I don’t even want to draw hand turkeys anymore. I tried to rekindle a simple part of my childhood and I ended up reminding myself that my entire existence is based on lies and murder. I’m sorry. I just need a break from all this intolerance.

I wonder if the Redskins are playing?



Nic Dobija-Nootens

Author: Nic Dobija-Nootens

Nic Dobija-Nootens is a writer and editor for Jenkem Magazine, the only skateboard news and culture website that matters. Nic once took a writing workshop and discovered he has a bad habit for writing incest jokes, so he's working on that. When he doesn’t feel like writing, Nic draws cartoons and takes nothing seriously whatsoever. Online he’s known as @noochens. Send him a message and let him know when he offended you.

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