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2011-09-22 digital edition

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2011-09-22 / General Stories

Home Country

by Slim Randles

“Good morning, boys!” said Delbert McLain, glad-handing the regular members of the worlddilemma think tank at the Mule Barn truck stop’s philosophy counter. “I need your advice.”

Well, when the director (make that “sole employee”) of our local Chamber of Commerce needs advice from the best minds in the county, he’d naturally show up here in his white shirt and tie. We all sat up a bit straighter and adjusted our gimme caps to a jauntier angle. Doc is our usual spokesman, having more initials behind his name than any of us.

Doc said, “Our advice is free and worth every penny, and our attention is focused solely on you. What’s up?”

“Boys, we need a celebration, a festival, a real humdinger of a blow-out.”

“And you need me to play the accordion?” said Dud.

“No, Dud,” said Steve. “I think the idea is to attract people to come to it.”

“That’s right,” Delbert said, grinning. “We need something really unique to bring people here. Calaveras County has its frog jumping, Mojave has turtle races, Hinkley has buzzards. Deming has duck races. Anchorage has an ugly dog contest. We need something to call our own.”

“A varmint-oriented whing- ding, as it were,” said Steve, nodding sagely beneath his cowboy hat.

“ Precisely,” said Delbert, grinning and rubbing his hands.

“Relax,” said Dud. “You’ve come to the right place.”

And we sipped, and considered, and broke down into actual thought.

“Are nude foot races out?” said Doc.

“Afraid so. Yes.”

“Bed bug jamboree?”

“No way, Dud.”

“Gopher golf? You know, hit the ball in gopher holes instead of on the course?” said Doc.

“Or,” suggested Steve, “a Who Flung Dung competition using seasoned horse leavings. You know, separate contests for accuracy and distance.”

Delbert looked at him. “You’re a sick puppy, Steve, you know that?”

“I’ve got it!” said Doc. “We could have a huge dance contest where everyone dances with a drain pipe! Call it the Rollicking Run-Off Romp!”

Delbert groaned. “I see we’ll have to open this idea to the public.”

Brought to you by Slim’s new book “ A Cowboy’s Guide to Growing Up Right.” Learn more at http:// www.nmsantos.com/ Slim/Slim.html.

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