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    Possum Huntin’

    2010 - 02.15

    Yesterday was Valentine’s Day. I’m sure you noticed. I don’t get all hot and bothered by it, because I don’t have a girlfriend. I’m more of a summertime kind of guy. Besides, in this economy, who can afford a girlfriend? Instead, I chose to spend my sweetheart money on High Life (The Champagne) and Goldschlager (The Clear).

    Buda and I decided to head down to Fontaine’s and get some liquor drinks rather than our usual Sunday night Moe’s and Joe’s ritual. To make a long story short, we got a pretty good buzz going and ranted about guns, women, and taxes. You know, the usual.

    I ventured back to Narnia and as I was stepping onto my front porch, I heard something scurrying to my right in the bushes. I looked over, thinking it was one of those God-forsaken squirrels that haunt my existence. To my surprise, it was a possum, a big old veiny bastard, climbing up the tree directly adjacent to my house.

    “I’m gonna tag that sumbitch!” I thought to myself and looked around for something to throw at it. My first thought was a piece of a 2X4 laying near my steps. I picked it up and immediately thought better of it. The tree the possum was on stradles the fence between my yard and my neighbor’s yard. They park their cars behind their house and if that 2X4 skipped off the tree and smacked their BMW, I’d be up shit creek.

    Evil Incarnate

    Mr. Possum was snakin’ his way up that tree and I was weaponless. I hurriedly glanced around the porch for something, anything to peg him with. My eyes came to rest on a 3/4 can of Coca-Cola someone left on the porch a month or two back. I raced over to it, picked it up, and rushed back to the porch steps. I kicked open the screen door and reared back and hurled that Coke can with all might.

    As I watched it flip end over end, spewing that brown nectar all over God’s creation, time seemed to slow for me. I flashed back to my youth. There I was, 10 years of age, bunting a triple in the bottom of the 6th to win the game for my baseball team. Another scene flashed in my eyes, I was 18, sprinting down the runway of the pole-vaulting pit and launching myself high into the air. I narrowly missed the bar, winning the County Championship for myself. My vision cleared and for the brief second that Coke can was in the air, I was the champion of sport. All the world was my oyster and I was gonna eat. Mmmm nom nom.

    The possum was nearly to the safety of the branches when the Coke can struck him; a deft blow to his jowl region. He squealed in pain and the force of the blow knocked him from the tree. The Coke can bounced back into my yard and I heard the possum land in the neighbor’s yard with sickening thud. I’m sure I didn’t kill it, there’s no way I could be that lucky. He probably only fell about 10 feet and landed in the grass on the other side of the fence. But the knowledge that I scored a decisive win over a creature so foul was enough to send me to sleep last night with a mile-wide grin on my face.

    Know ye this, Herr Possum: Whence the battle of Good Vs. Possum commences, I’ll be there on the front lines armed with an entire fridgepack of Coca-Cola. Abandon all hope vermin who darest cross into the realm of Narnia!

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    Won’t You Take Me to Midgettown?

    2010 - 02.04

    Another weekend, another adventure. Even something so simple as a trip to Eatonton, GA to go see a couple of former bandmates play an acoustic show gets way out of hand. I recruited a couple of friends, Jacoby and Caroline to go with me. They’re both from out of state and had never seen rural Georgia in all its glory.

    Eatonton is not far from Milledgeville, where I went to college; maybe 20 minutes or so. So, after the acoustic show at the restaurant, I took Jacoby and Caroline down to Milledgeville to show them my old stomping grounds. Our intention was to go and hit up a couple of the bars I used to frequent and then crash over at my buddy Joe’s place. That plan hit a snag as we were pulling into town and Joe sends me a text message saying that the new girl he’s dating is “…gonna crash on the couch. Sorry.” Haha, likely story. This ain’t my first rodeo, so I told him not to sweat it and we’d find other accommodations. Worst case scenario, we’d have to get a $40 hotel room.

    My next call was to Woodshed Player, Andrew Tecumseh Crider. He’s still in college down there at the distinguished Georgia College & State University, so I was thinking he might be out and we could borrow some floor space at his casa. It turns out that not only was he in town, Wiley and his fiance were in town as well and all hanging out over at another friend, Garr’s, house. By the time we made it to the bar, Wiley and Tracy were already passed out, but Andrew was still ready to party.

    First stop: Buffington’s. I worked there for a couple of years while I was in school, and the thing I love most about the place is that even 5 years later, as soon as I walk in the door, I know 10 people. That’s rare in a college town.

    Caroline and Jacoby were immediately stoked by the beer prices. A Tall Boy of PBR is like a $1, which is a nice change from the over-priced boutique beers all the rage in Atlanta. I’d been drinking beer all night, so I needed a liquor drink. “Jack & Coke, Good Sir, and don’t scrimp on the Jack.”

    Andrew met us at The Buff and we all got pretty liquored up, for a grand total of $16. Hard to beat that, even with a stick. Meanwhile, Jacoby went and made friends with the bass player of the band. She said he looked like a rapist. How that translates into someone you want to meet, I haven’t the slightest clue, but she came out of the deal with a free t-shirt and 2 cds. The girl gets results, and you can’t argue with results.

    Quttin’ time rolled around, so we headed back down the street towards Garr’s house. I’d asked Andrew if it was cool if  we stayed at his apartment, but he was like, “Dude, just stay over at Garr’s house. He’s got extra beds.” I’d told him to ask Garr to be sure. Garr and I know each other and are cool with each other, but we’re not like best friends or anything. I probably only see the guy 2 or 3 times a year. Andrew swore that it was ok, so off we went.

    En Route to Garr’s house, Jacoby decided it to be fun to ride on Andrew’s back while he ran. I’ve seen enough drunken wrecks, concussions, and trips to Grady in 2010 to know this was going to end badly. As I stood there with Caroline watching these fools, I said to her, “They’re going to bust their asses.” Right as finished speaking, Jacoby leaned forward and Andrew lost his balance. He fell onto his knees at first, ripping his jeans. He was able to break the rest of his fall with his hands, but not before his forehead skipped off the ground. I had a hearty belly laugh and then said, “I told you so.”

    We got back to Garr’s house and of course everyone was passed out. He’s got these 2 twin sized beds in what used to be the karaoke room. I staked my claim to one and laid down. About 8:30 or so, I hear talking. I also realize that someone is curled up by my back. I looked over into the other bed and I see Caroline. I just sorta assumed that Jacoby was on the other side of her next to the wall. That only left one person who could be in the bed with me. Andrew. Awkward.

    Because this body snuggled up to me was facing my back, I couldn’t tell who it was. The mind races in situations like these, and my feet were freezing, plus I had to piss like a Russian racehorse. The talking outside the room stopped and I heard the sound of footsteps going back upstairs. I rolled over and realized that it was Jacoby sleeping next to me. That was a relief, but where the hell was Andrew?

    I climbed out of bed to go pee. I then looked around the house only to discover that Andrew had bailed on us at some point during the night. Awesome. Now we were sleeping in a house where the owners had no idea we were there, and the one guy that could vouch for us, had hit the bricks. I crept back into the room and woke Jacoby and Caroline.

    “Y’all wanna get out of here before anyone wakes up?” I said. They both agreed and we tracked down our stuff and walked out the front door without anyone noticing. We made it about 2 blocks down the road when Jacoby stopped. “Wait, where’s my cellphone? I must have left it in the house…”

    This necessitated me going back into a house that I had essentially just squatted in. It’s like returning to the scene of a crime after you know you’ve gotten away with it. I stepped inside the door and immediately went to look for the phone as stealthily as possible. I dialed Jacoby’s phone with mine, and I could hear it vibrating. I looked around in the bedroom. No luck. “Where the hell is that thing?” I muttered to myself.  I heard someone stirring upstairs. “Shit! I gotta hurry!”

    I walked back into the living room and dialed the phone again. It was definitely in here somewhere. I dug around in the couch, not there. I pulled off the cushion on one of those huge wing-chairs that everyone has in their formal living room but no one ever sits in and there it is was, laughing at me in all its 1997 Cricket Phone glory. I quickly grabbed it and headed back out the front door, silent as a ninja.

    I hoofed it back down to where Jacoby and Caroline were waiting on the sidewalk. “Well, I guess we dodged a bullet on that one, huh?” I asked. “Let’s go get some Waffle House. I need a patty melt.”

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