Laugh Tracks in the Dust 5-31-10 |

Laugh Tracks in the Dust 5-31-10

My good ol’ buddy, Elpee Peavine of Albuquerque, N.M., and his two grown sons, Blumin and Buddin, came to Damphewmore Acres last week for a four-day fishin’ and bondin’ trip in the Flint Hills. Ol’ Elpee and I go way back to the mid-1960s in Stillwater, Okla., with our friendship.

We fished hard for three of the four days – and told lies, and some of them true, on the fourth day becuz it wuz raining too hard to fish comfortably. During our days fishin’ some of the most beautiful farm and ranch ponds in the Flint Hills, we had some notable things happen.

While we didn’t catch any big fish, we did catch a lot of filleting-size fish, most of them bass and crappie. But, ol’ Elpee did manage to entice a huge bluegill sunfish and a huge green sunfish to bite his lure and get them into his fish basket. Those two “trophies” were among the largest of their species I’ve ever seen.

And, on the first day, we hadn’t been fishin’ an hour when Buddin came walking back to the pickup holding his hand out and gritting his teeth. He wuz trying to get the hook from a flopping fish’s mouth, when he got the hook imbedded deeply into the fleshy part of his left index finger. After a little bleeding and a lot of teeth gnashing, we finally used a pair of pliers to extricate the hook.

Then two days later, Buddin, leaned over at water’s edge to lift a nice bass from the water when he heard a sickening plop and knew he dropped his cell phone into the water. He didn’t even try to find it as he knew it wuz ruined.

And I had perhaps the strangest thing happen to me that I’ve ever had while fishing. I hooked a nice little crappie and when I landed it, I looked down into its mouth to unhook the hook. What I saw instead astounded me. My fish wasn’t hooked on the real fish hook, it was caught – firmly clear through its hard upper lip – on the little brass snap swivel on which I attach the hook.

Either I’d forgotten to snap the swivel together or else that fish had managed to unsnap it when it struck my lure. Either way, it’s a feat nearly impossible because those snap swivels are so tight I have a hard time getting a hook through the gap. Regardless of how it happened, it DID happen and I have a witness to vouch for it.

There isn’t a much better way to keep a dear friendship close than for friends to go fishing together.


My friend ol’ Rollin Birdz feared his wife wasn’t hearing as well as she used to and he thought she might need a hearing aid. Not quite sure how to approach her on the subject, he called the family doctor to discuss the problem.

The doctor told Rollin there is a simple informal test he could perform to give the doctor a better idea about her hearing loss. “Here’s what you do,” said the Doctor. “Stand about 40-feet away from her, and say something in a normal conversational speaking tone see if she hears you. If not, go to 30 feet, then 20 feet, and so on until you get a response.”

That evening, Rollin’s lovely wife was in the kitchen cooking supper when Rollin came into the house from doing chores. He says to himself, “I’m about 40 feet away, let’s see what happens. Then in a normal tone he asks, “Honey, what’s for supper?” No response.

So, Rollin moves closer to the kitchen, about 30 feet from his wife, and repeats, “Honey, what’s for supper?” Still no response.

Next he moves into the dining room where he is about 20 feet from his wife and asks, “Honey, what’s for supper?” Again he gets no response.

So, he walks up to the kitchen door, about 10 feet away. “Honey, what’s for dinner?” Again there is no response. So he walks right up behind her. “Honey, what’s for dinner?”

She finally replied, “Rollin! For the FIFTH time, it’s ROAST BEEF!”

Rollin, who actually wears a hearing aid himself, is getting it adjusted soon.


Tom from Cheyenne, Wyo., gave me a phone call a few days ago to tell me some pertinent news.

Tom, who is 85 years young and retired from the railroad, told me that some friends of his recently had reasons to find a new home for their tiny toy poodle pet.

Tom agreed to become the new dog’s owner. And, he says, he wuz especially attached to his new pet becuz its name wuz “Milo.”

Now Tom sez he has two good friend by that name. I’m flattered.


Time to put the wrap on this column for this week. I’ll close with these words of wisdom about flattery from author Larry Kerstem: “Flattery: If you want to get to the top, prepare to kiss a lot of the bottom.”

Have a good ‘un.

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