We drove in silence, well out into the farm country of the Snake River Plain. It was Memorial Day, and we were supposed to be heading to a family cemetery to meet Toni’s parents at the gravesite of her younger brother, now gone some 30 years.
Chris Hunt's blog
As I pulled into the parking lot of the little dive bar located on a lonely country road outside the idyllic community of Live Oak, Fla., I was suddenly transported back to my early teens, when one of the most illicit acts for which I was ever punished was sneaking out into the living room late one night and watching the movie “Porky’s” on HBO.
They say the first taste is free, right?
It doesn’t matter what it is. Could be that first bag of jalapeno potato chips or a spicy bowl of perfect Cajun gumbo. Or it could be something more insidious and life-wrecking. There’s always going to be somebody out there who will do whatever it takes to set that hook and send you down a lifelong spiral of hopeless addiction.
Yes I am a pirate, two hundred years too late
The cannons don't thunder, there's nothing to plunder
I'm an over-forty victim of fate
Arriving too late, arriving too late
I've done a bit of smuggling, I've run my share of grass
I made enough money to buy Miami, but I pissed it away so fast
Never meant to last, never meant to last
—Jimmy Buffett, A Pirate Looks at 40
The bright yellow streamer — an oversized Slumpbuster sporting a stinger hook and an attitude fit for its quarry — pulsed perfectly through the tannin-stained water, just visible under the surface.
I’ve been thinking a lot about mice lately. And not just in the general vermin sense. Yes, it’s true that my girlfriend had one skitter across her foot on the stairs landing this week, which sent me to the garage to find traps and such. We’re now paying for an exterminator, mostly because it’s less hassle than trying to dig through the store room to find the tiny cracks and holes the shoulderless little rodents can squeeze through.
When I was 11 years old, my father moved our family from suburban Denver to the Piney Woods region of East Texas. As much as I protested — the move would take us 17 hours, with one dinner break and a couple of rest-area pee stops, from the rest of our family — the move wasn’t all bad. As we pulled into the low country around the Sabine River late one night, my sinuses opened up and I realized something that I never knew I was missing.
It’s a new year, and I’m doing what I do just about every January. I’m already on the plan to try and dump the holiday weight, coupled with the “COVID weight,” which has been a persistent companion since we all locked down nearly two years ago. And yes, it really has been that long. But it’s more than that. This year, a lot has changed, and that means the resolutions will change, too.
Many years ago, I worked as the editor of a small weekly newspaper in Salida, Colo. — it was the flagship publication for a modest “chain” of newspapers stretching north to Buena Vista and Leadville and northeast, over Trout Creek Pass to the little town of Fairplay. It was the week after Thanksgiving and a buddy of mine, Dale, was planning a holiday trip home to Iowa (or maybe Indiana or Ohio — some Midwestern stronghold), and he wanted to take some trout home to share with his family.
Does it really taste that good? Or does it just taste that good because you’re drinking it at the fishing lodge? It might be one of those impossible-to-answer questions.
My girlfriend would have everyone believe that bacon fried on a griddle outside the camper in the middle of nowhere somehow tastes better than bacon fried up at home on the stovetop. Same for hashbrowns and sausage. And anything cooked in a Dutch oven, of course.