This classic American idiom means to talk plainly and bluntly, to get down to business, and dates from the early 19th century. The origin remains obscure and ranges from trading game birds with Red Indians to imitating the sounds of turkeys, although what the latter has to do with talking plainly is anybody’s guess. The most plausible origin would seem to revolve around Thanksgiving dinners when American families would simply talk pleasantly over the traditional roast turkey. Over time, the meaning changed from talking pleasantries to no nonsense, straight talk, which Americans have always prided themselves upon and remains within context. See also cold turkey.