Did you ever have one of those days? I did yesterday and still don’t know what to make of it. I friggin worked my ass off too. I can’t remember the last time I had a goddamn day off to just lie around the house and do nothing. A day when the wife and kids are gone and I have the place to myself and don’t have to shower and don’t have to be nowhere specific and no one knows or cares where I am neither. A day when I can start on a twelve-pack at eleven and the phone don’t ring once and I don’t have to get off the couch if I don’t want to.

A day when laughing at Judge Judy on the TV is the highlight.

Well today I finally get to have that kind of day, ole judge included. And it’s raining out which only sweetens the pot. But yesterday I had the kind of day you never wanna have. And like I said I worked my ass off. Colder than a witches tit it was. I did what I had to do to get paid and the boss was happy enough with the job itself. I’ll tell ya what-climbing up on wires all day was a helluva lot easier when I was younger. And stronger. And what with another psychopath going in and shooting up a bunch of people again-I mean six and seven year old kids too for chrissake- and with the holidays been and gone and all that goes along with THAT, moving forward and getting everything lived through is pretty much all I’m after.

Lately I’ve been thinking way too much about the black hole of the deranged mind.

So today, nothing. Or something if I feel like it. Whatever. Right now I’m occupying myself with that fancy coffee Dixie bought us, a Christmas gift. Dixie, she’s that neighbor lady, the one with the cats? It’s called Starbucks Dark Caffe Verona Coffee. That was mighty kind of her doncha think? A bit of a surprise and now of course we gotta buy her something. I guess I could do that today but it’s way too wet out.

I’ll let the wife do it.

What rattled my chain most about yesterday was that darn Charlie Mason. Coming at me like he does with his motormouth. It happens whenever I get paired up with him, but is much worse when something happens in the news, you know like it did yesterday with those poor kids. He’s one of the change-the-world types, never happy with the way things are, always wanting to pass new laws and put programs in place and impose his views on everybody. It’s no fun having to be one-on-one with him climbing up on telephone poles all over the state, believe you me.

I wind up being fodder for all his socialist, bleeding-heart, liberal crap.

Can you stand it?

We weren’t even halfway over to Fairview when he started in. “Don’t you think by now it’s about time we make it harder to get guns? We’re the only civilized country in the world that has so many murders, it’s horrible.”

Oh geez. “You people ain’t taking nothin away from me. I’m a law-abidin citizen here and I got a right to bear arms, says so right there in the Constitution. Don’t get into it with me here today Charlie Mason. There’s already too much going on. I’m not in the mood.”

He huffed a little at that. But I really wasn’t in the mood.

“Yeh, but how many innocent people have to die?”

“Charlie. Like the other day. If that principal had a gun, or better yet one of the teachers, then someone coulda pulled out an Uzi and blown that nutjob to shreds before he hurt anybody. That guy was crazy. No one’s gonna take away our guns. Yall are living in a fantasy world if you think that’s gonna happen anytime soon.”

This shut him up. Well until we got to Fairview and I got my skinny ass up the pole.

Fairview is a nice enough place. It’s kinda far out there, but it’s real pretty country just the same. A great place to raise kids and full of hardworking red-blooded Americans ain’t it the truth. Churchgoers too. Good people. Not much to it really, an exit off the interstate with a traffic light at a crossroads with a little store that sells pretty much everything, from coffee and breakfast sandwiches and basic necessities to fishing licenses and snuff tobacco and hunting gear and whenever you walk in there’s always a bunch of locals hanging around shooting the shit. Me and Charlie pulled off the interstate and parked the truck in the gravel parking lot.

“That’s the pole right there,” I told Charlie. “I’m gonna run in and get a refill on my coffee and we’ll get right on it.”

I got out of the truck and Charlie followed me into the store. The warmth and chatter immediately hit us in the face. It was crowded with the usual suspects and the overhead TV had the attention of the place. I looked up and saw the President was crying. Oh Lord. I poured some coffee into my refillable mug and made way over to the counter where Charlie was talking to the worker lady, putting her through the wringer on the breakfast menu.

“I’ll take the one with the sausage,” he said.

“Okay honey. English muffin or biscuit?” she asked.

“English muffin.”

She smiled at me. “Anything for you?”

“Nothing for me ma’am but this cup of coffee here.”

We got in line at the register and behind us were a couple of good ole boys in camouflage, stocking up on beer and food and supplies and most likely on their way out for a hunt. A good morning for it really, crystal clear. They were watching the President up on the screen and making wisecracks and chuckling. I looked at Charlie as he stood next to them. His eyes were on the President too and I could see that listening to their banter was unnerving him.

“Charlie, let’s pay and get outta here.”

The good ole boys looked first at me then Charlie. The fat one winked at him. “Hey buddy, the line’s movin. Don’t you worry about it, that ole Hussein Obama’s just talkin the same shit, it ain’t nothin new. You ain’t gonna miss nothin.”

Charlie turned to the worker lady and paid for his food. She gave him his change and we started for the door. Charlie turned to the good ole boys and pointed at the TV. “Why don’t you guys show a little respect, that’s our President up there.” He looked around at the customers in the store. “Do you hear me?”

The good ole boys looked at each other and laughed and mimicked in unison, “Oh, show a little respect, that’s our President!”

We got outside and that’s when I finally got my skinny ass up the pole.

So it was one of those days. The weather man said twenty-eight degrees but up there it hadda be more like zero. It sure felt like it. Charlie was the guy on the ground and I got myself up top and got the box open and started doing my thing. The wind blew bitter on my face in no time at all. I fussed around and sent my code down and Charlie sent his signals back up. I took a sip of my coffee and looked down and saw the good ole boys backing their truck right up to where Charlie was standing. The fat one got out from the driver’s side and was waving his arms. He and Charlie were having words.

Charlie shoulda known better than to open his mouth in the first place.

So today I’ll do nothing. Tomorrow morning I’ll have to shave and shower and get myself down to the magistrate’s office first thing. I’m sure they’ll have question after question for me, just grill the HELL outta me! The damn wife just about shit a brick too when she heard. They say Charlie’ll pull through which to me is a gift and a curse sorry to say. The bullet only pierced his stomach lining, nothing fatal. At least no one thinks I’m a part of it, that’s a relief. I mean I was up on the pole minding my own business, right?

I just know God’s gonna bless the day when people shut the hell up and realize we all got a right to defend ourselves.



  1. This really taps into something elemental and fearful about coming up against gun rights advocates – that they can effectively end an argument before it’s begun. Good writing, but I’m going to read something else now that doesn’t make me grit my teeth!

  2. Good story. When I worked in the States I had conversations just like this. One guy told me that everyone needed a gun, and whenever they wanted they would take their guns, go to Canada and annex us. He seemed very proud of that.

  3. Interesting read. Coming from Australia where gun laws are pretty rigid it was really hard for me to understand the culture behind guns until a friend who is from the US explained it. There isn’t really any simple fix, is there.

    • No. And I actually was reading about how quickly things changed in Australia back when gun laws were tightened up. So there’s hope yet! Thanks for reading littlebird, I appreciate it. 🙂

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