As always I appreciate my friend Slim Randles for sharing his columns with us, especially when it’s a day for a blog post and I have nothing. I mean no words. No issues to rant about, which may make some of you very happy. 🙂
Anyway, I’m going to let Slim entertain you while I try to find a few words for my new story. While there’s some momentum on that front, I want to keep it going.
Mrs. Forrest is serving fried chicken with gravy. Eons ago, this was one of my favorite suppers, and I once had a neighbor who made the best. I was always delighted when she invited us to share the bounty at her table. So, today I’m sharing Mrs. Forrest’s bounty with you. Grab a fork and enjoy…
Mrs. Forrest has always been a compulsive feeder. Before she retired, she was cooking for the Mule Barn truck stop’s customers, and she’s singularly responsible for about three flabby tons of avoirdupois on this nation’s truck drivers, and may have been marginally responsible, third-hand, for a cardiac event or two.
But now she’s retired, and a widow, and her kids all have kids and are scattered like a covey of quail. Local bachelors of a certain age know if they should just happen to be chatting with Mrs. Forrest on her front lawn along about supper time, there’s a dang-near dead certainty they’ll get a meal out of it.
And, through the magic of telepathic communication and the synchronistic wave lengths of humanity, the message about Mrs. Forrest’s unstoppable feeding compulsion had somehow reached the psyches of the homeless.
At any rate, two of the aforementioned drifters had knocked on Mrs. Forrest’s door and asked if there were any chores she needed done in exchange for some food. Well, you should’ve seen her eyes light up at that question. She said she had a bunch of firewood that needed to be split into kindling and if they didn’t mind doing that, she’d fix them a chicken dinner with cream gravy. Mrs. Forrest puts cream gravy on everything.
So she busied herself in the kitchen, and then went out to see how these fellows were doing. And there, leaning on an ax handle, was one of them, and the other was doing gymnastics in and around the woodpile. It was amazing. He’d come out of a round-off flip flop and then gracefully go into a full layout Sukuhara with a right-hand twist. She watched in awe for a few minutes before whispering to this gymnast’s partner.
“I had no idea your friend was an acrobat,” she whispered.
He looked at her and whispered back, “Neither did I ‘til I cracked him on the shin with this ax.”
Brought to you by Ol’ Max Evans: The First Thousand Years, by Slim Randles. www.unmpress.com
Check out all of Slim’s award-winning books at his Goodreads Page and in better bookstores and bunkhouses throughout the free world.
All of the posts here are from his syndicated column, Home Country that is read in hundreds of newspapers across the country. I am always happy to have him share his wit and wisdom here.
Slim Randles is a veteran newspaperman, hunting guide, cowboy and dog musher. He was a feature writer and columnist for The Anchorage Daily News for ten years and guided hunters in the Alaska Range and the Talkeetna Mountains. A resident of New Mexico now for more than thirty years, Randles is the prize-winning author of a dozen books, and is host of two podcasts and a television program.