Sunday, August 31, 2008

Festus, My Ole Hound Dog

(Apologies to those who had the unfortunate opportunity to read this before.)

Festus was my favorite ole hound dog. I could tell ole Festus' bray over all them other mutt's whenever they got after one of them coons. He was an old blue tick hound that my granpap left me when he went and died on us last year. Granpap knew I loved to hunt with ole Festus so he left me his prize possession.

Shoot, I remember the time a year or two thereabouts when Granpap and I took ole Festus up to Riley's Corner. There was a subborned ole coon that kept gittin in the corn crib at the Perry General Store and they couldn't ketch it. When us got Festus there he got the scent right off and away we went. We raced up the hill and down into the holler and around the bend to the old Simmons place. I thought old Festus had lost his ever lovin mind to take us there, but sure enough, that ole coon was roosting in old man Simmons barn. We shot the critter and old Mr. Perry was so happy he gave Granpap a gallon of shine and me a bag of rock candy. I shared with ole Festus as he done mosta work.

Well, a lot of water has gone under that bridge and Granpap is gone and Festus is gone too now. You see ole Festus went to chasing cars about half a year ago. One day he chased one of them fast sport cars and when he quick a runnin' a truck datgum run-ed over him. Ole Festus, being the tough critter that he is, lived through that but lost all four of his legs. He was left with just the nubbins. It broke my heart to see ole Festus just layin there. Thats when it all started to come to an end.

Ole Festus was layin on the porch by the stairs when a cottin tail wabbit wandered inta the yard. Ole Festus start a brayin and just raisin cane over that lil ole wabbit. I run-ed out to see what was the matter when I saw that wabbit look up at Festus with a grin. I swear I herd him laugh. That's when I grabbed Festus and put him in the wheel barrow. He danged near ran me to death chasin that stinkin wabbit. We chased him for on a half hour before I gived out. I decided I had to do somethin fer pur ole Festus.

The next day I wandered out into the woods and found four tree limbs that was just right. I done some wittlin on them and made ole Festus some legs. I tied them to his nubbs and off he went, happier than Aunt Sally with a chocolate cake. Old Festus walked around on them until the other day when the field ketched fire and poor ole Festus burnt to the ground.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I Feel Safer Already

This news just in: 8/26/08 @ 1:40 PM...

All of the Wal-Marts across Alabama sold out of ammunition as of yesterday. A reliable source said that one of the purchasers commented that while Russia may have invaded Georgia, they sure as h_ll ain't doin' it to Alabama.

Varmit Hunting

I was walking the other night out to my shop building. After a hot day the sidewalk was still warm but the air had cooled and ther evening seemed to turn out pleasant. I noticed that a couple of pears had fallen and were half eaten by some varmit that usually wanders the property.

I open the shop, the air stale from the building being shut up for days. The first thing that greets me is my old Dodge convertible. I look at it and wonder if I'll ever get it running again. The way things are as of now, it doesn't seem likely. But my task isn't the car, it is looking for some indestript tool that I know I won't find. What I find is that something has thrown everything all over the place. The tools on the workbench has been scattered over the floor. Plans I had drawn for a shelving unit had been ripped up and chewed on.

I froze. There's a varmit in the building.

I slowly turn and grab a garden hoe that thankfully wasn't put in its correct place, in the garden shed. Now that I can defend myself, I go into the hunting mode. I slowly walk over to the wood bin. I shake it making all kinds of noise, but no varmit. I tiptoe over to the Christmas boxes stacked full of stuff varmits love to chew on. I search one after the other but no varmit.

Then panick hit me. The car. The varmit has took up residence in the car. I could see the seats shedded, the carpet soiled with, well, you know what, I could see that it would be a nightmare. I walked up to the car and peeked inside, everything looked as I left it. The dust on the seat and dashboard showed me that nothing had disturbed it.

Then it dawned on me. The eves of the roof. The varmit is roosting in the eves of the roof. Being a shop and not being finished on the inside as a house would, the eves of the roof are closed to the outside but open on the inside. I start checking those eves, one after the other until I came to the last one, of course it had to be the last one, and there was a mound of fur in the corner. I could see this gray fur and one paw which had long claws and I knew that a possum had invaded my shop.

I found an old broom stick that I had stuck a nail into for picking up trash. I took it and jabbed it but it didn't move. Was it dead of just playing possum? I wasn't going to grab it to find out. I jabbed it harder and harder, hard enough I thought it would draw blood, but it didn't move. I grabbed the hoe and hooked the leg. It came to life then and turned to face the hoe. A long hiss came out of it, it sounded like something from a horror movie. Great, what do I do now? I'm not a gun owner, not yet anyway, so I couldn't shoot it and drag it out and bury it. But I do have a air nozzle on my air compressor. So I fire up the compressor and see if that would work. I was amazed at the reaction the varmit had to a stream of compressed air.

It went bonkers. You'd thought it was from Yonkers. I came out of the eve and down the wall. One thing I failed to mention is that I had opened the overhead door that is on the wall beside where he was resting. As he descended down the wall my hopes were that he would just run outside the door. But no, he turns and comes directly for me. Another thing I forgot to mention is that I'm standing on a stool designed to be sat on to work on a vehicle. It folds up for storage and has wheels on the bottom. I think you get the picture already. I make the unfortunate move of flinching when he turned toward me. The wheels start rolling and my butt heads for the floor.

They say that in dramatic periods of your life that time slows down. I watched in slow motion as the floor came closer and closer. At least I'd be landing on the most padded part of my body. I watched the stool shoot out from under my feet and slam into the possum. The air nozzle never leaving my hand, and never stopped shooting the air towards the possum. I guess it was more than he wanted to put up with, the last time I saw him he was headed towards the neighbors house, laughing all the way.

I decided then and there, too much city in this old boy. Hunting varmits isn't a hobby I'll ever embrace. I'm sure the varmits feel much safer tonight.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Don't Fool With A Fool

The wind of a cool autumn night was blowing the leaves around our feet as we wandered down the street. We worked closely together and became more than just partners on the job, but also partners in life. We held each other close, using the cool temperature as and excuse as we walked on, lost in each other’s arms. Our attention was so focused on each other that we became unaware of our surroundings and didn't noticed we had wandered off the main street and into the darkness of the side streets. Suddenly a man appeared before us from out of nowhere, holding a knife and demanding money, “Or else” he screamed. I put my arm in front of her as I pushed her behind me, standing between her and danger. I held out my money clip to him, I could see he was high on something that wasn't legal.

“Where’s your wallet?!”

“I don’t carry one”

“You gotta have credit cards, what about your bitch?”

“You can have my money but you don’t disrespect my lady.”

He waved his knife in front of my face; “Just what are you going to do about it?” He sounded as though he was in grade school.

I told him that he didn’t want to pursue this. He answered by putting the point of the knife to my chin, “I said, what are you going to do about it?”

I looked him in the eye and said; “I guess I can do this.” I pulled my gun and shot him.

He obviously didn't read the Robber's Handbook.

Rule number one: “Don’t pick on an off duty cop.”

Rule number two is “Don’t take a knife to a gun fight.”

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Total Terror

We just sat down to supper. Outside the thunder rolled and the lightening flashed. It is the perfect night to watch the original Halloween movie once again. I laugh at how young Jamie Lee Curtis looks until I realized how young I looked all those many years ago. Just as the bad guy was reaching for the closet door, our lights went out. I jumped into my wife's lap and screamed like a little girl. That's when it happened….

The first ring.

They immediately started, the cold sweats, the trembling fingers, and my heart trying to burst through my chest. I just know it's that ghastly and horrifying man calling to torment me. It has to be him, who else would call at this time of night? My knees are weak as I stumble towards the telephone. Maybe if I just don't answer it, yeah, if I don't answer it I won't hear his cruel voice. No, that won't work, he will just continue to call. How long can he terrorize me? How long until I can once again sit in my home in peace?

Second ring.

It seems louder than the first. Is he playing with me? Why is there someone outside playing the drums? Oh, that's my heart beating inside my ears. What if I let the answering machine do it's job and answer for me? It might work to give me a few moments of peace, but he will call back, he most certainly will call back.

Third ring.

OK, answer it and get it over with. He can't terrorize me all nightcan he? What can he really do? He's just a voice on the phone. OK, I'm gonna answer. Steady now, it's just a phone. A voice can't hurtyou, only make you hurt yourself as you run for safety.I lift the receiver to my ear.


"Yes, I'm Teddy Telemarketer with Acme Widgets and do I have a deal for you!"

AHWAAAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! It's even more dreadful than I feared! When will my no-call status kick in? Oh the inhumanity of it all! My dinner's getting cold! Don't let them smell fear! HomelandSecurity, please put a stop to these terrorist!

I quickly hang up and stand there shaking in the darkened room. I stare at the phone wondering when it will ring again, feeling the telemarketer tentacles reaching out to grab my throat. I try to finish my dinner but nothing taste good cold. Then I hear it…

The first ring…….