Sunday, October 21, 2012

119. Anger

C.W. was angry, which was unusual. He usual spends his energy making other people angry.

“Cotton pickin’ dadburned sodbuster,” he yelled from the living room. “No good sidewinder!”

I looked in to find him arrayed as a perfect imitation of 1940s western sidekick, a close match to Gabby Hayes.

“What are you looking at?” he said, a fleck of spittle landing on his whiskers.

“Mind telling me what you’re up to?”

“Trying to figure out your consarnded species.” He held up a folded newspaper.

“What about my species?”

“Why your men are so angry.”

“Our men?”

“Well, your old white men like me. Goldarnit, what has them so upset?”

“I’m not upset.”

“Nobody ever said you was typical.”

“That may be, but I’m still not angry.”

“It don’t bother you that you will be in the minority soon?”

“Not particularly.”

“Or that women are taking over the professions one by one?”

“They are welcome to them.”

“Don’t you see the American Dream slipping away from you, dadblast it? You do have dreams don’t you?”

“I had a dream once to learn to play the banjo.”

“See there,” he said. “So what happened?”

“I decided it took too much practice.”

“Is that all?”

“That plus my wife began to act a little homicidal about it”

“There you go,” he said. “A dadburned woman made you give up your dream. She threaten to leave you?”

“Oh no.”

“But she made you give it up?”

“Oh yes.”


“She would sit at the kitchen table loading and unloading her pistol while she hummed that tune from the movie Deliverance.”

“Dadblame it. There you go,” he said. “They’s subtle creatures, ain’t they?”

“They manage to exert their wills.”

“Anything else?”

I thought. “Well, there was my boxed CD set of the complete works of Robert Johnson that disappeared.”

“Disappeared, you say?”

“Yeah, she says someone probably broke in and stole it.”

“It’s purty sad, ain’t it?”

“Yeah,” I said. I could feel the resentment beginning to build like a small fire.

“Stole it, eh?”

“Yeah,” I said. “Walked right by the TV set and radio to steal a set of CDs.” I was getting agitated now. “And she thinks I believe her.”

“At a boy,” he said. “Now you’re gettin’ it.”

“Just wait ‘til they take over the world,” I shouted.

“Yeah, jist wait,” he said.

My temperature was rising now. “Just wait,” I said. “They’ll take our aircraft-carrier money and spend it on  …” I struggle for the words.
I can see a day when
us men won't control
a goldarned thing. - C.W.

“Dadgummed flower gardens,” he yelled.

“Quilting clubs,” I screamed.

We were both standing now, shouting at one another. Then suddenly, we heard a voice from the kitchen.

“You two better quiet down. Don’t make me have to come in there.”

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