Tricking a Trickster

Packing up one house to move to another is only half the battle. Now I am in my new house surrounded by boxes. Thank goodness, my kids have been able to come and help with the settling in, and a couple of rooms are almost completely set up, most importantly the kitchen and the bedroom. Still waiting to get my office finished, and get Internet service, so I am working with my little Chrome Book and a hot-spot on my phone. Not optimum writing conditions. As soon as I get my PC set up and connected to Internet service, I’ll share pictures of my new house.

Slim Randles is my guest today, continuing the story from last week about Doc and his squirrel. Grab a biscuit warm from the oven and enjoy….


When Steve and Dud got up to go get a paper, it left just Doc and Bert sitting at the philosophy counter of the Mule Barn truck stop. Bert turned his head and smirked a little, being careful not to let Doc see him. Doc also didn’t see Dud outside, punching in a number on his cell phone while Steve stood by as a cheerleader.

“Doc,” said Loretta, filling the coffee cups, “phone call for you, Hon.”

“Here? Okay…” Doc walked over to the cash register and picked up the phone.

“This here Doc?” said the caller. “The Doc what lost his squirrel?”

“Uh …” Doc looked around for help. There was none. “Yes. Yes it is.”

“Found your dang squirrel here, Doc. That reward thing still good?”

“Well … yes.”

“Five dollars and a quarter, right? Now is that cash or check? I don’t take no checks.”

Doc is looking all around and looks wilderness-type lost. “Cash I guess.”

“Only thing is, Doc. Need to be sure this is your squirrel, right? So can you describe him for me?”

“He’s … gray.”

“All gray squirrels are gray, now, ain’t that right? How about any distinguishing marks? Tattoos?”

“No tattoos.”

“So far so good. Now you said in the ad his name is Chipper. Well, I called him Chipper and the son of a gun bit me.”

“He did?”

“What I mean to ask here, Doc, is … did you and your squirrel get along? No squirrel problems? He looks like he needs a square meal to me. You feed him good?”


“You know … like Squirrel Chow Free Choice, or did you put him on a nut ration? I mean, he ate like there was no tomorrow. Dang near ate up the whole five dollars and a quarter reward money in squirrel food.”

Steve and Dud walked back into the café, then, with the cell phone still at Dud’s ear, and the laughing began.

“You were right all along, Doc,” said Bert. “In winter, everyone can use a good hoax.”

Doc bought the coffee.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

Stories, laughs and great classic country music. Tune in to Home Country with Slim Randles. Check your local stations for the times.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Slim Randles writes a nationally syndicated column, “Home Country” and is the author of a number of books including  Saddle Up: A Cowboy Guide to Writing. That title, and others, are published by  LPD Press. If you enjoy his columns here, you might want to check out the book Home Country. It has some of the best of his offerings through the years.

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