My wife always tells me that I am a natural born liar, but most of what follows is true to the best of my recollection. True, a story isn’t worth tellin if it isn’t embellished just a touch when ya get to the part 0f the story where it kind of drags a bit, but I am sure you guys are with me, cause when you get to that part, ya start yawnin and well, that is where most leave the coarse of the story to look at me with blank eyes, my wife always calls it screen saver; cause it kind of looks like when the screen on your computer starts glazing over with some random photo scenario cause you cant figure out what to type or maybe you are so bored you could scream or maybe just take a nap…
In any event, I digress, I got up this morning and as is my custom, I made a cup of coffee in one of those fancy coffee makers that has some European name and makes one cup and you get to choose how large. Well, as has become my custom since I was discharged from my real world job due to poor economic conditions (oops, once again I am off on a rabbit trail, please forgive me). Anyway, I get my cup of coffee and sit down with my three dogs, or more appropriately, they demand that I sit just so and then they occupy spots on my lap previously determined by some act of instinct or possibly by that deal where the survivalist of the fittest kind of deal sets in. In any event, I got to thinking (you know I ain’t dead yet, when I still say I’m thinking although who knows, maybe I’m one of them vegetables their always talkin about!).
Now, what seems to me to be a long time ago, my folks decided that we needed some horses to ride, after all, didn’t we live in Redmond Oregon and were we not rural people (Sarcasm, my mom was a city girl!)? Well the weeks that followed, led to many trips around the country to look at horses and such. We all loaded into the family station wagon, it was an old Chevy which had replaced the prior rig which had rolled down the side of Mt Hood with my mom, dad, and our family dog Daphne who was a large border collie who I am sure went through life wondering why she had been born into such a bunch of hellions continuously being torn through her breeding to protect us, and her natural instinct telling her to kill all of us kids because we inflicted so much hell in her life.
After that fateful decision by my folks to enhance us kids lives, they started watching the paper want ads and am radio ads which led to the family visiting a colorful neighbor who was five or ten miles down or up the the road depending on your perspective. When we arrived, it was a whole new world, and at first I was quite embarrassed because this “gentleman” had a whole slew of cuss words that I had never heard before! Mom and dad got this funny look, every time that fellow let loose with a sentence which contained very few words that I understood, but I sensed approval from mom and dad from the shocked looks on their faces and from that point forward that evening I tried to emulate that feller to look and sound like him, all the while trying to achieve a new level of my parents approval. Mom and dad got more and more pie eyed (if you have ever seen a horse look at a blanket caught in the wind) by the new words coming out of my young innocent mouth, until suddenly, they just gathered up us kids and back into the station wagon we went, homeward bound!
Upon returning home, mom and dad broke out the wine seeking some sort of solace and us kids were sent off to bed, even my older brother who seemed to be on a level just below mom and dad.
My mother, was a follower of the first self help child raising author; Dr. Spock, who was teaching the science of raising youth to save the future of the world through love and kind words rather than letting her kids experience the rod. To say she was a progressive would be an understatement! Mom, with lots of understanding and compassion, was very patient with the new words I had learned from that “nice” man with the interesting vocabulary. That progressive attitude of compassion and understanding ended not too long after our visit! Mother had reached the end of her chain (if you get the guard dog on a chain theory! In any event, she reached a point where her anger was much more powerful than the chains that helped her to maintain the early 60‘S Leave It to Beaver Mom syndrome, at which point My sore butt let me know that in no uncertain terms talking like that F word using horse trainer was not to be allowed…
Our next horse buying adventure was up the way a bit, towards Tumalo, Oregon. We were once again out looking at horses, looking at form and all of that boring stuff, which I am sure some of you horse people are aware of and others who are not horse people, don’t have a clue what I am talking about. At that age, I didn’t have a clue either, but after listening to the adults discussing various horses form and looking at their teeth followed by further discussion, my little sister and I got bored and headed down to the river looking for anything that didn’t have so much discussion involved. There was an old plank and log bridge you had to cross over the river to get to these peoples house so Sis and I were hanging out by that bridge overlooking the river, tossing rocks at birds and such, and generally entertaining our selves,(If you know the, “if you don’t go and entertain yourselves, you are going to get your butt whipped” scenario) under threat of child endangerment. In any event, we got into the stinging nettles that bordered the stream. Well, let me tell you, that shit hurts like hell when you grab onto a mess of those velvet looking leaves!
After awhile, when the pain was subsiding and I was feeling more and more like myself, my brother came over from the click of adults; (Joel was older, a whole two whole years older, and because of that hung out with the adults…) you know, like he was getting into management or something like that. In any event, after awhile, he came strolling over, with no little authority, chest pumped out, and looking authoritative, giving the command, if you can imagine Moses handing out of the ten commandments; it is was time to go. Sis and I were to go and get in the car for the ride home. Well suddenly something possessed me, little voices in the back of my head, you know,” you ain’t the boss of me,” me, guiding me. I said with all the innocence I could muster, “you have to feel these plants Joel, they are soft feel like velvet”… My butt still smarts thinking of the horse whipping my mom gave me that night, she didn’t even wait for my dad to do it, like she always threatened and in any event, dad was laughing too hard to inflict any pain…
In the end, we did end up getting some Welsh ponies, which we rode and rode and rode and possibly got into further trouble. Those ponies and the experiences gained led further down the road to being a teller of stories in which my wife states that I embellish a bit, just ask her!
Now once again, I must warn you that my wife tells me that I embellish and am a natural born liar, so if this isn’t to your liking, please do not continue with this series of short stories! But, if indeed you don’t mind a little bit of embellishment, like and share this with all of your friends. Oh and by series, I mean that I am going to get into some of my most embarrassing fishing and hunting stories in the next series of posts.