What's the Difference Between a Resume and a CV?

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iStock.com/peepo

Searching for a new job is a stressful process. After perfecting your resume and finding the right job opportunity, the last thing you want to hear is that the employer only accepts CVs. Though they're used in similar contexts, the terms curriculum vitae (or CV) and resume sometimes refer to different things—and it can be hard to keep track of what situations call for which one.

A big difference between a resume and CV is length. A resume is typically a one-page document that briefly summarizes your qualifications, including your education, relevant skills, and past jobs and duties. The purpose isn't to provide a comprehensive rundown of your professional life, but to cherry-pick whichever highlights will grab an employer's attention. If you can't fit every position you've held since graduation on one page, you should mention the jobs that are most similar to the job you want. Same goes for past responsibilities. A resume is meant to be customized to match each new job you apply for, and any information that isn't relevant should be left out.

A CV, on the other hand, goes more in-depth. Taking up two or more pages, a CV covers your entire career and features detailed summaries of your accomplishments rather than short blurbs. If you're applying for an academic position or grant, you would use your CV to list all of your publications, research projects, teaching experience, honors, and degrees. Unlike a resume, candidates submit the same CV with each new application rather than updating it to fit different jobs.

In the U.S. and Canada, employers almost always ask for resumes; the only time you'll be required to show a CV is if you're looking for a research or academic position. CVs are also used to apply for fellowships, tenure review, and sabbatical leave in academia.

Things start to get confusing if you're applying for jobs overseas. In New Zealand, the UK, and other European countries, the term CV is used as catch-all for both of the documents described above, and in South Africa, India, and Australia the terms CV and resume are used interchangeably. If it's a job where sending a resume would be appropriate in the U.S., CV probably refers to the shorter-form document. If it's more of an academic position, they're likely looking for a traditional CV. And if you don't want to take the risk, it doesn't hurt to reach out to the HR department to confirm their preference.

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Why Do We Eat Pumpkin Pie at Thanksgiving?

gjohnstonphoto/iStock via Getty Images
gjohnstonphoto/iStock via Getty Images

While it’s possible—even probable—that pumpkins were served at the 1621 harvest festival that’s now considered the predecessor to Thanksgiving, attendees definitely didn’t dine on pumpkin pie (there was no butter or wheat flour to make crust).

The earliest known recipes for pumpkin pie actually come from 17th-century Europe. Pumpkins, like potatoes and tomatoes, were first introduced to Europe in the Columbian Exchange, but Europeans were more comfortable cooking with pumpkins because they were similar to their native gourds.

By the 18th century, however, Europeans on the whole lost interest in pumpkin pie. According to HowStuffWorks, Europeans began to prefer apple, pear, and quince pies, which they perceived as more sophisticated. But at the same time pumpkin pie was losing favor in Europe, it was gaining true staple status in America.

In 1796, Amelia Simmons published American Cookery, the first cookbook written and published in the New World colonies. Simmons included two recipes for “pompkin pudding” cooked in pastry crust. Simmons’s recipes call for “stewed and strained” pumpkin, combined with a mixture of nutmeg, allspice, and ginger (yes, it seems our pumpkin spice obsession dates back to at least the 1500s).

But how did pumpkin pie become so irrevocably tied with the Thanksgiving holiday? That has everything to do with Sarah Josepha Hale, a New Hampshire-born writer and editor who is often called the “Godmother of Thanksgiving.” In her 1827 abolitionist novel Northwood, Hale described a Thanksgiving meal complete with “fried chicken floating in gravy,” broiled ham, wheat bread, cranberry sauce, and—of course—pumpkin pie. For more than 30 years, Hale advocated for Thanksgiving to become a national holiday, writing regular editorials and sending letters to five American presidents. Thanksgiving was a symbol for unity in an increasingly divided country, she argued [PDF].

Abraham Lincoln eventually declared Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863 (to near-immediate outcry from Southerners, who viewed the holiday as an attempt to enforce Yankee values). Southern governors reluctantly complied with the presidential proclamation, but cooks in the South developed their own unique regional traditions. In the South, sweet potato pie quickly became more popular than New England’s pumpkin pie (mostly because sweet potatoes were easier to come by than pumpkins). Now, pumpkin pie reigns supreme as the most popular holiday pie across most of the United States, although the Northeast prefers apple and the South is split between apple and pecan, another Southern staple.

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What's the Difference Between Stuffing and Dressing?

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iStock

For carbohydrate lovers, nothing completes a Thanksgiving meal quite like stuffing—shovelfuls of bread, celery, mushrooms, and other ingredients that complement all of that turkey protein.

Some people don’t say stuffing, though. They say dressing. In these calamitous times, knowing how to properly refer to the giant glob of insulin-spiking bread seems necessary. So what's the difference?

Let’s dismiss one theory off the bat: Dressing and stuffing do not correlate with how the side dish is prepared. A turkey can be stuffed with dressing, and stuffing can be served in a casserole dish. Whether it’s ever seen the inside of a bird is irrelevant, and anyone who tells you otherwise is wrong and should be met with suspicion, if not outright derision.

The terms are actually separated due to regional dialects. Dressing seems to be the favored descriptor for southern states like Mississippi, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Georgia, while stuffing is preferred by Maine, New York, and other northern areas. (Some parts of Pennsylvania call it filling, which is a bit too on the nose, but to each their own.)

If stuffing stemmed from the common practice of filling a turkey with carbs, why the division? According to HuffPost, it may have been because Southerners considered the word stuffing impolite, and therefore never embraced it.

While you should experience no material difference in asking for stuffing or dressing, when visiting relatives it might be helpful to keep to their regionally-preferred word to avoid confusion. Enjoy stuffing yourselves.

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