Minnow trapped | TheFencePost.com

Minnow trapped

Okay, here's a humorous story that happened to me last week. Put your mental home video on play as I tell this story and you'll enjoy it more vividly in your mind.

I have a friend from Iowa, ol' Pegan Raye, who overwinters at Apache Junction, Ariz., every year. He notified me when he will pass through the Flint Hills on his way southwest and said he'd like to do a day or two of fall fishing.

That's fine with me, but I needed to get a bunch of minnows for when he's here and, luckily, I have a ready source — a little pond owned by my good buddy, ol' Lon G. Horner. All it takes is to throw a baited minnow trap into the pond one day and the next day go get your live bait.

Well, it so happens that there are three friendly little miniature donkeys who run in the pasture with the pond. They are so friendly, they are pests. So, I wuzn't too happy to see all three little donkeys come frisking down to meet me at the minnow pond.

When I got out of the pickup, they mobbed me — nuzzling, nipping, nudging — anything to get some attention, some ear scratching, and hopefully a treat of some kind.

I couldn't shoo them away, so I took a slice of bread that I wuz gonna use for minnow trap bait and tossed three pieces away from me and into the grass. The little mobsters hungrily went looking for the bread.

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Meanwhile, I hastily grabbed the minnow trap, unwired the latch holding the two halves together, put in the rest of the bread bait, and had the top half of the trap ready to wire to the bottom half when "oops," the top half jumped out of my hand and headed north.

I looked up and one of the donkeys had got the end of the long trap rope wrapped around a hind leg. At first he just kicked a little and looked curiously at the wire trap half. But then the trap jumped at him and he sped up. And the trap jumped higher. And the donkey sped up again. The trap jumped again. This put the little donkey into high gear. He headed north over the hill at top speed, kicking his hind legs in the air, braying for all the world to hear. The other two donkeys joined in the fray.

All I could do is watch. I walked to the top of the hill and saw the donkey herd had stopped. Then I spied the top half of the trap lying in the grass. I fetched it and saw the cord wuz broken. Then I saw that the rope wuz still attached to the donkey's hind leg. He wouldn't let me catch him and he headed back to the pond on the run, shaking his "roped" leg all the way.

Finally, the rope loosened and fell off. I gathered it up. Shooed away the donkeys as best I could and finally got the trap baited, thrown into the pond, and anchored. It wuz only then that I began to see the humor in the situation.

Next morning, I had plenty of minnows for fishing. Pulled the trap and exited the pasture without having any more donkey encounters.

•••

Another good Iowa friend, my ol' sheep shearing buddy Nick deHyde, had a great thing happen to him recently. He's always wanted to attend the Trailing of the Sheep Festival held each fall in the eastern Idaho towns of Ketchum, Sun Valley and Hailey. It's been a stable sheep industry event for decades.

Well, this year ol' Nick's daughter bought two airplane tickets to attend the festival. Plus, she went to the trouble of telling the festival big-wigs about everything her dad has done for the sheep industry — raising sheep himself all his life, operating the Iowa Ram Test Station, helping with sheep shearing contests, helping with sheep dog trials, guest lecturing at Iowa State University on the sheep industry, holding a host of industry offices. In short, Nick's devoted his life to the sheep industry.

Once the big-wigs got the info, they added Nick to the list of honorary sheep industry dignitaries who got to ride in the Trailing of the Sheep parade right down Main Street.

Nick and his daughter enjoyed everything about the festival. When I called Nick to congratulate him, I told him that I could have related stories about his involvement in the sheep industry that would have earned him a ride on the "goat float" at the festival.

•••

Hauled a year's accumulation of assorted scrap metal to the salvage yard this week. I sold $15.50 worth of scrap. But then it cost me $8 to throw away an old television set. Go figger! I didn't get rich on that transaction.

•••

By the time you read this the midterm elections will be over. I'm hoping for the best, but not too optimistic. At least the miserable political ads will be over for a few months.

•••

Got all the fall radishes picked and given away. The carrots and turnips are still growing. So I might have some of those veggies in the near future.

The fall colors are beautiful — even to a colorblind blight like myself. So, I bet they're really spectacular for normal folks.

Here are my words of wisdom for this week: "The actors' union would be a good place to try socialism in the U.S. One actor/actress earning $20-million for a job could redistribute his or her largess to hundreds of struggling actors and provide them a living wage." Don't hold your breath. Actions have more weight then words. Have a good 'un. ❖