Freitag, 10. Februar 2012

Country Livin'

For several days I had been hearing about this big snow storm that was coming my way. Back in the 1970's this would have been allotted 10 seconds on the two minute weather section of the nightly news the day before the snow arrived. It would have been simply stated “snow tomorrow”. But now? There is a channel dedicated just to the weather. And the sole function of that channel is to make money and how do they do that? But making everything sound like an impending disaster. So this snow fall was sold to us Nebraskans for several days as “a major snow storm that will come sweeping across the plains wreaking havoc and destruction in it's wake!!”. Whoo-ee. Nine inches of wet snow that didn't blow or drift and was easily removed from the roads and from my driveway. But it was during the 3 hours I leisurely spent removing the snow that I start my narrative.

I live in the middle of nowhere Nebraska. I have 3 acres of land but I'm surrounded by corn fields and prairie grass/trees. I can't see my nearest neighbor's house. For the first 2.5 hours I shoveled the snow in utterly silent bliss. I didn't see or hear a soul. Then a big blue pickup truck comes driving up the dirt road I live on and stops right in front of my house. There are two men in the truck and I'm wondering what they want but it's immediately obvious that they aren't even aware of my presence because their attention is locked on the corn field across the road from me. They sit there staring at the corn field for several minutes while I continue to shovel the snow about 40 feet away from them. Finally they start slowly rolling down the road and stop again after about 20 yards and sit staring at the field. I'm reasonably sure what they are look for and then suddenly off in the distance I hear a shot gun blast echoing through the air and then a few seconds later another shot rings out. The pickup truck races off down the road. I'm assuming they were watching either an animal or a person in the field. From my position I couldn't tell for sure. But I heard the truck stop further down the road and then I heard another shot gun blast, this one much closer as it was fired by one of the guys from the truck, who were now trudging through the snow in the field. Then I heard the extremely creepy sound of a semi-automatic rifle firing off several rounds per second. Each shot made a sound similar to “bweet” and you could hear the bullets zipping through the cold still air. It had an apocalyptic-end-of-the-world feel to it standing there in my driveway hearing bullets flying through the air and seeing nothing but trees and empty fields. And I'm certain that these mighty warriors put a lot of thought into the possibility as to what might happen if they missed their target. How far could these bullets travel? Who else was out in the field? I know the guys in the truck did not own the field as it is owned by my neighbor. I dropped my shovel and went into my house until these Rambos finished destroying whatever their high tech scopes were locked on to. Luckily it didn't take too long until these brave hunters had dispatched the dangerous beast in the field, probably a bunny rabbit. News apparently spreads fast when “We's gots some critters to kill!!” hits the air waves for it wasn't long after that several more pickup trucks began driving by, all gazing into field of death.
Since my driveway was now cleared and the dirt road was passable I decided to drive to the wretched small town nearby to mail a letter. There is only one reason I ever go to that town and that is to use the post office. The population of the town is posted at 240 people. There are no stores, no gas stations. Just run down houses and boarded up buildings. The town sits about a mile off the main highway so it gets no through traffic, in short, it's a dead town. Well, just as I was entering Deadsville this awful little old shitbox pick up truck comes zooming out of a driveway about 5 feet in front of me.  The driver was leaning to one side and was struggling to turn the steering wheel to get in the correct lane of the road.  I followed behind this meandering fool for a short distance down the main street, glad that he was in front instead of behind me.  I turned and parked in front of the post office and Dirt Bag continued to the next street and where I assumed he was turning west and heading back out of town.  I was putting the letter in the mail box when I hear a loud "THOCK!" sound and turned around to see our hero had driven over the sidewalk and into the corner of some concrete steps in front of an old abandoned stone building.  Undaunted, the driving pickle put the rust bucket in reverse and I again assumed incorrectly that he would continue west out of town but much to my horror the misguided missile executed a big looping U turn and was now headed straight (I use the term "straight" loosely) for my Jeep.  I knew he was going to plow into the side of my poor already-hail-beaten defenseless Jeep but Captain Comatose had other plans and slammed his dent-mobile into the curb in front of the post office, right next to me.  I wanted to get a look at this fine citizen but didn't want to risk eye contact and a possible slurred "Yyoouu gotta ppproblem, bbuddddy??" so I turned and went to my Jeep while Alcohol Magnet stumbled across the street to the only business in town - a rat infested bar.  This numb nuts couldn't even walk the 100 yards from his junk yard house to this pickle parlor.  It gave me a warm secure feeling to think of my good buddies with sub-machine guns out in the killing  field across the road from my house. Each one of those loveable wacky gun slingin' guys was probably fueled by alcohol. Such is life in the country. 

- Leroy "Mr. Glue" Moore