Feisty Women

July 14, 2016

I have a double ear infection, the pain of which kept me awake last night, all night. My doctor couldn’t see me today, so I wound up in the walk-in care center in Upper Alton. A very nice nurse practioner gave me antibiotics and steroids and stuff to sniff up my nose.

I drove home and got the bright idea to mow the lawn in the middle of the day. I got it done, after losing two gallons of sweat and gulping iced tea and water. Then, soaking wet, I staggered over to Farmer Orville’s place to pick some blackberries. We sat on the porch, and Orville made fun of me, saying he used to mow his fifteen acres with a push mower, what the hell was I so tried about?

The body count at the farm was at an all-time high. The barn cats caught a blue-tailed skink and played with it, then Ruby Puppy joyfully swallowed it whole. Each of the cats caught mice and eviscerated them down to intestines in front of blackberry customers, causing a little girl to hurl.

My friend estimated he had sold almost a thousand pounds of blackberries in thirty to sixty pound increments, to wine makers and jam connoisseurs. Yet, the bushes looked like they hadn’t been touched. I picked a pound in about three minutes and also came away with more cucumbers and tomatoes.

“I got in a fight this morning,” Orville said. “With a feisty woman. I may have mentioned to her that I hate Hillary Clinton. Feisty dropped her bucket, gave me a speech. And she convinced me –”

“To vote for Hillary?”

“Hell, no. That I was right about the sleazy guy.”

Orville calls Trump “the sleazy guy,” because he can’t bring himself to name the Devil, even as he is a Missouri Synod Lutheran.

I will not argue with my friend. He is the salt of the earth, warm and caring. He takes excess produce to the local food pantry. If a homeless person set foot on his farm, that person, of any color or persuasion, would be fed, probably prayed over, most certainly clothed.

Me, I prefer feisty women. Feisty Sarah Palin: If she were the last woman on earth and I was the last man, I’d do her. I’d have to wash her mouth out with soap, but I’d do her.

I grew up on Anne Richards, Bella Abzug, Shirley Chisholm, all great women. My dad and other dads must have shuddered when they spoke, and looked nervously at their wives. Me, I got goose bumps. My mom voted for Kennedy, and you could have heard the dad howl a block away.

“So, you got in a political debate because you don’t want ladies with sass in your berry patch?” I said.

“Ladies are my best customers,” Orville said. “I like ladies. Not likely she will show up here, but I would sell to Hillary.”

Who doesn’t like a feisty lady with blackberry cash in her purse?

I walked home, showered, napped. And prayed that the end of the world wouldn’t come down to me and Sarah Palin. Or worse: Michele Bachman. She has eyes straight out of “The Walking Dead.”

I have standards.

About Eugene Jones Baldwin

I am a writer: non-fiction, fiction, journalism (Alton Telegraph), essays (The Genehouse Chronicles) and have a website: eugenebaldwin.com. I've published a couple dozen short stories and had eleven plays produced. Current projects: "Brother of the Stones" (available on Kindle), a book of short stories; "The Faithful Husband of the Rain, short stories"; "A Black Soldier's Letters Home, WWII,;" "There is No Color in Justice," a commentary on racism; "Ratkillers," a new play. I am an avocational archaeologist and I take parts of my collection of several thousand Indian artifacts (personal finds) to schools, nature centers, libraries etc. and talk about the 20,000 year history of The First people in Illinois. (See link to website) I'm also a playwright (eleven plays produced), musician, historian (authority on the Underground Railroad in Illinois, the Tuskegee Airmen) and teacher.
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