County Lines by Bob
While I was writing this week's North County Lines, Uncle Leo stopped
by. "Got any Viagra?" he asked.
"You have to get that from a doctor," I said. "While
you're at it, you might want to have the inside of your head checked.
A lot of sexual problems are mental."
"It ain't for me, boy,Ó he said. "It's for my bull Marvin.
He ain't payin' attention to the ladies like he should."
"Marvin's 18," I said. "That's almost 100 in cow
years. His lack of desire for a love life is natural."
"He's got a few good years left, boy. Maybe the vet would
write him a prescription for some."
"Maybe," I said. "But enough Viagra to do Marvin
any good would be bigger than a bowling ball. How would you get
him to swallow it?"
While Uncle Leo pondered that over, the phone rang and continued
ringing. "Ain't you goin' to answer it, boy?"
"No," I said. "You can't just let it ring and ring."
"Watch me," I said. Uncle Leo picked up the phone and
handed it to me. "Answer it, boy, the ringin' is drivin' me
"Short trip," I said.
I flipped on the phone. "Hello," I said.
The voice at the other end said, "Would you like to change
your long distance provider?"
"Call here again," I said, "and I'll hunt you down
and make you wish you didn't." I pushed the talk button off,
walked into the kitchen, and tossed the phone into the refrigerator.
When I turned around, Uncle Leo was sitting in my chair, pecking
at the keyboard of my computer.
"Computers are like wives," I said. "You shouldn't
touch any except your own. Get out of my chair. I have work to do."
"You tryin' to get rid of me, boy?"
"Tell you what,Ó I said. "When I'm finished here, I'll
stop and pick you up. We'll go to the lake and chase away tourists
with our insane redneck routine."
"The one where you throw rocks," Uncle Leo said, "and
I roll around squealin' like a pig."
"That's the one," I said.
Uncle Leo wasn't gone five minutes when Zig Zag Greckle stopped
by. Zig Zag lives two places down in a purple Volkswagen van with
four flat tires. In the sixties, Zig Zag was into the free your
mind thing. Zig Zag freed his mind so completely most of it never
For some reason, Zig Zag can't remember why, he has two Dobermans
named Wynnona and Judd.
After walking in, Zig Zag flopped down on the couch and stared
at the ceiling for several minutes before saying, "Where am
"You're here," I said.
"Where's here, man?"
"Here is where you are," I said. "If you weren't
here, you'd be somewhere else. But you're here, not there."
"Thanks for clearing that up, man," Zig Zag said.
"Do you need something?Ó I asked. Zig Zag stared out the window
like he was watching an imaginary bird fly by. "It's my dogs,
man. They disappeared. I've tried to find them, but I'm too wasted
to look anymore."
"I thought you were off the drugs, Zig Zag."
"I am," he said. "But it's the flashbacks. Hendrix.
Joplin. Haight-Ashbury. The purple haze. The orange sunshine. Timothy
Leary's theory. When everything comes rushing in at once, I buzz
off into space. It's hard getting back, man."
"Let's go outside, Zig Zag," I said, "see if I can
locate your dogs."
I jumped onto the hood of my truck and yelled, "Wynnona! Judd!
A monster thudded out of the woods on two legs. The creature bent
its head back and screamed. Birds and squirrels flew and scampered
out of the trees.
I pulled out my .38 and fired two shots over the creature's head.
The monster thumped back into the woods.
"Far out," Zig Zag said. "What was that?"
"A hideous beast," I said. "First chance I get,
I'll track it down and chase it back to Nashville where she belongs."
"Where am I?" Zig Zag asked.
"We've already been through that," I said. "Go
home. Your dogs will come back when they get hungry."
I was walking back inside when I heard what sounded like a phone
ringing a long way off.
Oh no, I thought. Am I supposed to pick Pinchy up from work? That's
probably her calling to see why I'm late.
I opened the refrigerator, grabbed what I thought was the phone.
"Hello," I said. "Hello." I was still trying
to get someone to answer at the other end when Pinchy walked in.
"What are you doing?" she asked. "Talking on the
phone," I said.
"That's strange," she said. "You look like you're
holding a box of cheese against the side of your head. Put your
glasses on. Want to drive into town and rent a movie?"
"Can't," I said. "I'm going to the lake with Uncle
Leo. We're going to scare away tourists."
"Where's the money for bail?" Pinchy said. "Just
in case the cops haul you off again."
"In a secret hiding place," I said. "Guess where."
"Taped to the mirror by the front door," Pinchy said,
"in an envelope with money written on it."
"Smart place for me to put it," I said. "You could
say I'm a genius for hiding it there."
"You could," Pinchy said. "But I wouldn't."
When Pinchy compliments me like that, I feel all warm and squishy
inside, like a cherry pie straight from the oven, but not hot enough
to burn my mouth.
Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570