Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I Don't Have the Sense God Gave a Billy Goat. (Luckily I Am Not Alone)

An old hill farmer trudges several miles through freezing snow to his local and very remote chapel for Sunday service. No-one else is there, aside from the clergyman.

"I'm not sure it's worth proceeding with the service - might we do better to go back to our warm homes and a hot drink?.." asks the preacher, inviting a mutually helpful reaction from his audience of one.

"Well, I'm just a simple farmer," says the man, "But when I go to feed my herd, and if only one beast turns up, I sure don't leave it hungry."

So the preacher, feeling somewhat ashamed, delivers his service - all the bells and whistles, hymns and readings, lasting a good couple of hours - finishing proudly with the fresh observation that no matter how small the need, our duty remains. And he thanks the old farmer for the lesson he has learned.

"Was that okay?" asks the clergyman, as the two set off home.

"Well I'm just a simple farmer," says the man, "But when I go to feed my herd, and if only one beast turns up, I sure don't force it to eat what I brought for the whole herd..."


Or as Leon would say,

"Some people don't have the sense that God gave a billy goat." 

   This morning Mom, Leon and I got up and had the continental breakfast at the Best Western in Conway, AR. (it's right near Toad Suck Park in case you were wondering). After our biscuits and gravy ( and non brand fruit loops) we hit the highway. 

  Again mom wanted to drive (she's may be a pretend sound engineer but she's the real deal when it comes to cross country driving). So again Leon and I passed the time enjoying the scenery.

  We saw a long ridge of the Ozark mountains. We began talking all about the Ozarks when we passed a sign that said "Aux Arc". I had a crazy realization that made me feel dumber than a billy goat.

The word Ozark is OBVIOUSLY a linguistic bastardization of the French words Aux and Ark (which means of/at Ark. Where Ark is an abbreviation of Arkansas). How had I never noticed that before? I'm a Francophile and a word nerd. This type of thing is right up my alley. In retrospect it seems ridiculously elementary.

Anyway, we continued down the highway. As we did, I marveled at this revelation about the etymology of the word Ozark and I laughed at my own ignorance for not realizing it earlier.

I don't have the sense God gave a billy goat apparently.

Well after a little more travel it was time for a gas stop, leg stretch stop, a drink stop and a bathroom stop. We took care of all these needs at a Love's Truck Stop.

I grabbed a few Monster Energy drinks (I intended on getting one but the price was $2.59 for one or $2.99 for 3. I may be dumber than a billy goat but I do have a Math degree and I think I chose wisely to get 3 instead of one.)

Mom had gotten a coffee and a few diet cokes for the road. She got to the register and the girl says, "That'll be $6.49". At this point mom says, "Dang, I wanted to get one of those cookies but forgot….Don't worry about it."

 The girl was very helpful and said, "Thats no problem." She walked over and grabbed a cookie then she return to the register with it. She handed the cookie to mom and began calculating the new total.

She said, "That'll be $6.32"

I was thinking, "Damn. And I thought I got a good package deal on my energy drinks. Mom added a cookie and it subtracted 17 cents from the total."

Mom tried to correct the cashier but the girl wasn't budging. She insisted, "It's $6.32.". Well….What could mom do?
Mom eventually gave in and paid $6.32 and we headed back down the road.

Sometimes it takes some one else's stubbornness and ignorance to make us feel better about ourselves.

That cashier's insistence on being wrong made me feel so much better about my sub-billy goat I.Q.



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