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It’s Weird Word Wednesday! For those of you still stuck at work, take heart – tomorrow we celebrate Thanksgiving in the United States, when most of us get a  day off work to celebrate the hours-long foodathon. Some of us even get an extra day off to recuperate!

Thanksgiving itself originated with the first settlers. In 1621, Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians gathered for a harvest meal, one much different from the turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and pie of our current feast. Instead, they probably dined on, among other things, venison, squash, corn, grapes and berries.

The tradition of a meal held in thanksgiving continued for decades, and in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln declared a national Thanksgiving Day, held each November.

While most Thanksgiving revelers might not know today’s Weird Word, they’ll certainly feel its effect after they push their chairs away from the table!

Our word is farctate. It means “stuffed; overfilled,” or “filled to capacity.”

It’s also fun to say! The “c” is hard, and the word is pronounced with the accent on the first syllable. Phonetically, it’s “FARK-tate.”

In use, it’s like this:

After wolfing down six pieces of Aunt Edna’s mincemeat pie, Eudora was so farctate that she doubted she’d be able to help with the dishes. This was a Thanksgiving trend of Eudora’s that Phoebe, Eudora’s sister-in-law, noted with great perturbation.

In another “strange but true” bird-related event:

Workers wearing biohazard suits entered a home in a Chicago suburb, removing “an estimated 300 birds, junk and waste from a hoarder’s townhouse.” The bird-loving owner’s home was so farctate that he could no longer live there safely.

Thankfully, the man lived alone! His intentions were good – he started with one bird and just couldn’t say “no” to hundreds more, so I think he can be pardoned.

Much like our nation’s official Thanksgiving turkey! It’s an odd custom with murky origins, but each November, our president pardons a Thanksgiving turkey. The grateful bird even has a “backup” bird, much like a second in a duel, only without the gunfire.


Their unfortunate cousins, however, are positively farctate by the time Thanksgiving rolls around, stuffed in preparation so we can stuff them.

Enjoy the holiday!