Monday, November 19, 2007

Growing Up Ralph - Thanksgiving Tribute

I’m not sure if love is blind but I do think at times it’s pretty gullible.

Years ago, when Char and I were dating, Thanksgiving was a few weeks away. I asked if she would like to go to the district turkey shoot with me. Being young and in love, she immediately said yes.

The district turkey shoot involved all the people on my district competing for the largest frozen turkey by shooting clay pigeons. Clay pigeons are round, brightly colored clay disks, four inches in size, which are flung through the air by a machine. It's normally called trap shooting but because of Thanksgiving, we dubbed it the ‘turkey shoot’.

While driving up the mountain, Char said she had never been to a turkey shoot before. Hearing that, I didn’t want to bore her with minor details like shooting clay pigeons and frozen turkeys. I reached behind the seat, handed her a pair of long leather gloves, and told her she might want to put them on. She stared at them then asked why. “Oh, those are so the turkey spurs (claws) won’t tear up your arms . . . as bad.”

Now she was taking a real interest in the event, she even wanted to know what she had to do. “Well, when we get there put the gloves on, go to the cage and grab one of turkeys.” I had to pause to answer her question. Of course, they're live turkeys, you can’t shoot a dead one.

"Try and grab them as close to the legs as you can, that way they can’t kick as much and you can somewhat control how bad you get cut by the spurs.” I had to pause here for another question – of course, all the other girl friends and wives do the same thing. They have been for years, perhaps they can give you some pointers.

“When you’re holding the legs try not and worry about the beak. Those pecks really don’t hurt. . . .that much.” Another question – yeah, they peck, I thought everyone knew that.

I continued, “Say I don’t suppose you brought an extra set of clothes?” When she replied no I went on, “Man, that’s to bad. You see the natural tendency is to hold the turkey close to your body in an effort to control the spurs and the beak. But that’s the last thing you want to do, hold them away from you. If you hold them to close you’ll end up being covered with turkey crap and that stuff really stinks.” Another question. I felt obligated to answer, “Of course they do, if someone yanked you out of a cage and was about to throw you in the air to be shot at wouldn’t you?”

As we pulled into the field where the turkey shoot was to be held I had one last suggestion. “Oh yeah,” I said, “after you throw the turkey in the air don’t forget to fall to the ground . . . don’t want to get hit by any stray buckshot.”

Everyone just stared as Char climbed out wearing long leather gloves. She must have had a good time – she still married me. And, for that, I am thankful.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I married him, but I never, ever believe him!

9:37 AM  
Blogger Janell said...

What a GREAT story and I loved the way you wrote it, with the unrecorded questions being made obvious by the answers. Well done!

10:18 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

I'd say you're the biggest turkey yet!

2:44 PM  
Blogger Cliff said...

This is a great 'story' Ralph. I can't wait to hear Char's version.

3:07 PM  
Blogger 1 plus twins said...

ha ha that was too funny, i am hoping she doesn't go with you any more!! i agree with cliff i can't wait to hear her version!!

6:11 PM  
Blogger Jerry said...

Sounds to me like Char was up to the challenge anyways. What a trooper!

8:49 PM  
Blogger Cheyenne said...

Dude, you're so bad. But funny.

9:51 PM  
Blogger Miki said...

You SHOULD be thankful that you got the girl in the end! OH MY! Ralph, you are a bad man! Char, you are going to heaven! That was a cute story, Ralph, keep them comming. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

4:44 AM  
Blogger possum said...

I wonder if she had any idea she'd end up married to a turkey?????? :D
At least she got to see your sense of humor and you got a measure of her endurance!!!!!!
Thanks for the laugh!

7:11 AM  
Anonymous Tracey said...

You are so bad, lol! I admire you greatly for coming up with that story...

12:22 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

And she still married you Ralph!! She must have a great sense of humor!

7:34 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

Great story. Well done.

And happy Thanksgiving to you and Char.

6:42 AM  
Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

Of course she married you!! She knew that life with a man with a great sense of humor would be a wonderful adventure.
You got a wonderful woman if she was willing to actually go through with the "turkey" shoot. :-)

I put up a Thanksgiving post, but that will be all the blogging I do until next week.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!! Eat well.

11:36 AM  
Blogger Mountain Mama said...

You sure you don't have any Irish blood? Sounds like a basket of blarney to me.
Cute story Ralph. I wonder what your wife thought of your Your sense of humor?

Happy Thanksgiving to you

5:54 PM  
Blogger JUST A MOM said...

haha that would have been me... I went snipe hunting one time...

yeah we called it skeet shooting.

have a great Thanksgiving.

12:00 AM  
Blogger Raggedy said...

Endearing,beautiful,funny,and cute memory.
I laughed so hard at the first comment. She knew the whole
Thank you for sharing the story!
Gobble Gobble
Happy Thanksgiving!
(=':'=) huggles
(")_ (")Š from
da Raggedy one

2:46 PM  
Blogger Granny Annie said...

Should have known you'd have the perfect Thanksgiving Tale. How great -- poor Char. At least she never could say she didn't know what she was getting into.

6:26 AM  
Blogger Jim said...

Ralph, you were mean back there! I hope Char has tamed you some.

That reminds me of when I used to teach girls how to drive. Their Dad's always asked 'why' they did some quirky thing when the crossed the RR tracks.

It also reminds me of 'Swine Time' in Climax, Georgia. We used to go to that festival a lot, our daughter Karen tried to catch the greased pig one time.

And Char got her turkey, you!

8:37 AM  
Blogger Tee said...

I guess that's how you knew she was a keeper? ;)

11:41 AM  

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