"When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained."---Mark Twain

Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Snipe Hunt

I don't hunt. My ex used to hunt all the time and I bird-dogged for him, because I had nothing else to do. T-Bird used to hunt, but hangs around the house these days.

No desire to dress up like a bush and sit in a tree in the cold, I guess. Go figger.
Decades ago he tried to get me to go huntin' with him.

Snipe Huntin'.

Let me lay the ground-work for you:

When I was 17 years old there were rules that had to be followed at home. One of those rules stated in no uncertain terms that There Were To Be NO Phone Calls From Friends And/Or Boyfriends After 9:00 P.M..

So it is written, so shall it be done. Period.

I was still up when the phone rang around 10:00, and since I was the one closest to the phone, I answered it.

"Whatcha doin'?" It was T-Bird. The fecal matter was fixin' to hit the oscillator, and I knew it. He KNEW not to call me after 9:00, and I was gonna be in deep s**t, because it was up to me to make sure that nobody called for me that late at night.

Damn. The bastard was gonna get me in trouble! So real quick-like, I said that I was getting ready to go to bed. After I faced the music for the late-night call.

"Wanna go with me and some of the guys for a snipe hunt?"

"You're goin' huntin' in the middle of the night? With who?" I didn't know much about hunting of any sort, but that didn't sound right, even to me. I knew all of the other hunters----and so did Daddy----I knew this wasn't gonna fly.

"You have to hunt snipe at night when they're off the nests, and I found a great place for snipe."

There really are snipe----they do exist----but that's where the truth ends with a snipe hunt.

"There is no way that my daddy is gonna let me go out with all of y'all this late at night."

"Ask Ray (my daddy), and tell him what we're gonna do. I know he'll let you go. Let me ask him!"

Like Hell I would!

First of all, my ultra-conservative, Southern Baptist daddy was the father of three daughters, and he had done everything but dig a moat around the house and position guards to keep teenage boys from scaling his walls. Or anything else.

I was so thankful when I was a teenager that JC Penny and Sears didn't sell chastity belts, or I would have had one the day I got my first training bra. Those things were not designed for the sake of fashion or comfort. I'd seen drawings.

Secondly, I doubted seriously that he would allow me out of The Compound to go traipsing around the woods with four testosterone-ridden morons in a pick-up truck in the middle of the night.

I said Daddy KNEW all of them, I didn't say he liked ANY of them. We had already had the Boys-Are-Only-After-One-Thing discussion. We had had that talk more than once.

But T-Bird wasn't gonna give up, and I knew I was already in hot water for the phone call, so what the heck? In for a penny, in for a pound.

Daddy and Momma were in the kitchen, and when I asked for the permission I knew I wasn't going to get, I went ahead and threw in the fact that I would be in the company of more than one male.

Livin' on the edge here!

I braced for it when the last word left my mouth. I even held my breath..........

The Ultra-Conservative Southern Baptist Father Of Three Daughters said:

"A SNIPE HUNT???? Go!!!! You'll love it! You'll have so much fun!!!!! You have to do this!!!!!!!"

He had a big smile on his face that my mother always referred to as a "shit-eatin' grin".

HMMMMMMM....................When you hear the horn blast from a locomotive, and the crossing lights are flashing, and the gates are coming down, you know that a train is coming. You don't stand between the rails.


You could not have thrown me out of that house.

I didn't know what the deal was, but I knew I wouldn't like it. Nope. I wasn't gonna like it, not one bit. Somethin' was not right here, and I didn't believe in Pod People.

I went back to the phone and told T-Bird that Daddy had said no. Yes. I lied. Like a kennel full of dogs. T-Bird sounded disappointed.

Daddy was REALLY disappointed. "Aw, c'mon! You'll LOVE it!"

That confirmed my suspicions right there.

When it was clear to all that I was not going anywhere for any reason, he let me in on the joke. Well, thank you Dear Old Dad! I'll be happy to pick your nursing home!

What I found out later was that TWO of us were going to be left in the middle of no-freakin'-where in the middle of the woods in the middle of the night holding a stupid bag and lookin' stupid. And probably scared out of our minds.

The other victim called me the next day to tell me how he had been had.

"I was in position with the bag and all, and I was doing my best to keep an eye out for those birds, when I heard the truck doors slam. And I heard those bastards laughing when they drove off. They hollered 'see you later dumbass'. They left me out there for over an hour! I don't like being in the woods at night, not by myself, and they scared the Hell out of me."

They drove back to town and sat down for a meal at the Huddle House, had a good laugh, and then went back for him.

The victim became a preacher several years later. Maybe he found Jesus in those woods, since he didn't find those blasted birds. I hope he prays for his old buddies.

But I kinda doubt it. I'm still strugglin' to forgive this thing myself.


  1. ...Boys-Are-Only-After-One-Thing discussion...

    Starting to have those conversations with my daughter. She is only ten but I have this bad feeling...

    Yeah, I got hit with the great snipe hunt gag when I was twelve. My grandfather and one of my uncles were camping at the beach. All told it could have been much worse.

  2. Beach Bum: Never too early to start The Talk. My mother was back from the day you didn't talk about such things, so she handed me a book (A Doctor Talks To 10-12 yrs. Old) and told me there was "no such thing as a white knight on a white horse".
    Daddy filled in the blanks concerning male behavior. Life drove the facts home.

    My father would have LOVED to think of me stuck in the woods scared to death. He'd think it was funny as all get-out. Me? Not so much.