Gwen Petersen: In a Sow’s Ear 11-7-11
The Australians have a pull-your-leg sense of humor that can have you rolling in the aisles. If you haven’t read the responses to Australian tourism inquiries, google it online. I did, and thus inspired, came up with a list of foolish questions put to Montana tourism office. Some of them are true.
Q: Why do cowboys wear those big long handkerchiefs around their necks?
A: To cover up the seams where their necks attach to their shoulders.
Q: Why do ranchers brand animals with hot irons?
A: A cold iron doesn’t get the wrinkles out.
Q: Will I be able to see wolves in the wild if I come out west?
A: Sure, take one to lunch.
Q: Would I be able to ride a buffalo?
A: Only if it’s dead and/or you’re drunk.
Q: I’m planning on visiting Yellowstone National Park. Please send me a list of lodging places and restaurants in the Park and in surrounding communities.
A: Who was your unpaid secretary last year?
Q: Does Montana have scheduled coyote races? If so, please send dates.
A: Sure. Every 17th Sunday of the month. Bring binoculars.
Q: How cold does it get in Montana?
A: Nobody – except Al Gore – knows.
Q: Do cowboys carry firearms?
A: Only on weekends.
Q: Why do cowboys wear chaps?
A: They like the layered look.
Q: How could I become a cowgirl?
A: Try kissing a cowboy.
Q: Are there supermarkets in Montana?
A: No. You have to shoot your breakfast on a daily basis.
Q: Shall I bring evening dresses and high heels?
A: Absolutely. Wear to brandings.
Q: Do I need to bring anti rattlesnake serum with me?
A: No. All our rattlers have had anger management courses.
Q: How could I protect myself from a bear attack?
A: Bark like a dog and run like the devil.
Q: Are there indoor toilets in Montana?
A: Yes, but only in train stations.
Q: Could I go hiking in the wilderness or will I need to hire a guide? Is there a toll for hiking?
A: Hiking is free. A wolf on a leash will be your guide. The wolf is free but the leash is for rent (in advance).
Q: How close to the North Pole is Montana?
A: You can walk to Santa’s workshop in under 15 minutes.
Q: Are there any Indians still living in Montana?
A: Only my cousin: Does-Not-Play-Well-With-Others.
Q: Do the Indians speak English?
A: No. They communicate by smoke signal.
Q: Will I be able to speak English anywhere in Montana?
A: Only after you remove foot from mouth.
Q: Will Montanans be able to understand me?
A: Only if you speak slowly.
Q: Are there airports in Montana?
A: Yes. We keep the covered wagons there.
Q: Does it ever get windy in Montana?
A: No. Once in a while, an occasional soothing breeze.
Q: Does snow accumulate in winter?
A: Depends on your definition of “accumulate.”
Q: Are there Vegetarians and Vegans in Montana?
A: Yes, they’re called horses and cows.
Q: Will I see cowboys in big hats, jeans, boots, spurs?
A: Not if they see you first.