Turkey advice hotline has heard it all

Nov. 25, 2009 at 1:10 PM
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NAPERVILLE, Ill., Nov. 25 (UPI) -- The longtime U.S. supervisor of the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line says her job is to soothe the nerves of harried Thanksgiving cooks.

On Thanksgiving, at least, Marty Van Ness is everyone's mother as she dispenses sage (and savory) advice from Butterball's Talk-Line headquarters in Naperville, Ill., the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Wednesday.

Van Ness has been on the Talk-Line for 18 years and says she has heard it all in that span.

"The most distressed calls are when someone has mishandled the turkey," Van Ness told the newspaper. "They call because they think they have a safety issue, and they want me to tell them, 'You'll be fine.'"

She says she tells callers who have made too a big mess of the Thanksgiving feast to salvage the meal that she sympathizes, and wishes them better luck for next year.

"People are relieved they have someone to talk to who will hear them, and not judge them," she told the Journal Sentinel. "I would never tell them they're stupid. Everyone makes mistakes."

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