A new story from Bear Grease

Bear Grease


All right, pocket knife. Cover that one pretty well. At least it would get to the other pocket. But until we do, what else is in the old right front pocket? Chap stick. Now here's a disclaimer. Down here, we call lip balm chap stick. Regardless of the brain, but we never call it lip balm. Hey, I don't make the rules. I just live by them. That's the end of the disclaimer. ChapStick. Not much you can say about that. Sure you can. You can dive it on a cut to help stop bleeding. You can use it to moisturize, dry skin. Hank, you can even use the help with. Building a fire and keep you from having chapped lips. My dad told me a joke when I was a kid about an old cowboy that rode into town from out on the range, instead of rushing into the Sloan to get him a cold drink. He hitched his horse up and pulled a brush out of his saddle and started brushing himself off. The mayor of the town was watching him as the cowboy cleaned up as best he could, straighten his clothes, wash his hands in the trough and tuck the shirt in. The mayor was impressed and started walking toward him to welcome him to the town when the cowboy walked around to the back of the horse, poked his finger in the horses behind and rubbed it on his lips. The mayor was shocked. But he welcomed him anyway, and he said, I appreciate you cleaning up when you got here. We got a lovely little town, and we want to keep it that way. But man, I only got one question. Why did you poke your horses behind and rub it on your lips? Though cow more looked at him, he said, my lips are chapped. In the mayor said, oh, does that cure in the cowboy? He said, no, but it keeps me from licking him and making it worse. Tote some chap stick with its smaller than a horse cheaper to feed, and there's no bad aftertaste. The right front pocket is done. So what's an old lifting? Loner pocket knife, a book, and a sack of your wheel, $1 call. The loaner knife is for your friend that doesn't carry a one, but finds himself in the need of one on occasion, which is the very reason you don't want to begin with. And if he doesn't tote one, he didn't got enough sense not to use your good one in a manner that it wasn't designed. All these things I'm about to say now go slap out the window when it's emergency. When it's life and death, nothing else matters. However, when it ain't, and you need a wire cut, a screw tightened, or prabha, don't look at me and ask to borrow my pocket knife. It's something to be respected, taking care of, maintained, and sharpened regularly because a dull one is of no service to anyone. Now I'm not going to tell you what the brand of my loaner pocket knife is because it don't matter. It ain't a case. It's a well made pocket knife, I assure you. But I'm talking about what's in my pockets and what I like the best. You may hate case pocket knives and like something totally different. I don't care. That's fine with me, but you ought to be in jail if you do. Just kidding. Not really. What about that sacagawea $1 coin? Well, I can tell you it was mended in 2000. Monetarily it's worth whatever a dollar will buy you, but my wife gave it to me. And if you don't know who sacajawea is, do yourself a favor and look her up or better yet, read undaunted courage by Stephen Ambrose. That book is thicker than the cat head biscuit, but worth the effort and just as easy to digest. She was an invaluable guide and interpreter that helped Lewis and Clark found their way across the wilderness and back when our country was young, and we didn't know our behinds from 15 cents about anything west of St. Louis. The coin serves as a symbol for my wife to me that when I'm out on a hunt or a long journey, that can always find my way home. She's my sack of jail. She's a whole lot more, but she's not much on skin and stuff, though, and I have a feeling sack jalea was anyway. That's why I told it. The Buckeye, if you've listened to any of the bear grease render podcast, you may have heard me mention it. I'll tell you about this particular one in a minute. First, I want to talk about why you'd have one to begin with. Aeschylus pavia, Kamala referred to as the red Buckeye that is the most prominent variety of the two known grow to Arkansas. It produces a nut, which is actually the seed and it grows in a pod that matures in late summer. Now folks have been toting them in their pockets for luck for generations. There is an old saying that you'll never find a dead man with a Buckeye in his pocket. I don't know if that's because you don't find a lot of dead men laying around or because it wouldn't be too cool to peel for through their clothes if you did. My family, close friends and I would give them to each other as tokens of good luck for hunting. Somewhere in our family's past, it was dictated that one hunter had to give it to another for it to work. You couldn't just find one and put it in your pocket and reap the benefits. I think how that works. Now I'm not superstitious at all. I just firmly believe that if I was to lose the one I got in my pocket, that I would never have another successful hunt. The one I have I've been caring for close to ten years and it means a lot to me. First time I met old clay bow, he'd asked me to come film a bear hunt for him and the watch towel mounds in Arkansas. He and the majority of his youngers took me around where he grew up hunting and we wound up on a mountain in the area, and I saw a Buckeye bush. I told him the story of how my family traded him back and forth, and handed him one and in return, he gave one to me. I'm still touting it to this day, and I have every day since that hunt nearly ten years ago. Glaze always amazed when he asked about it, not take it out of my pocket and chill it to me. He told me he lost the one I gave him before we got off the mountain that day. He didn't kill a bear that year either. Coincidence. We'll never know for sure, but no, absolutely. Not a coincidence. In the bib of my overalls on the right side, I carry my bill fold, all my folding money. Inside that Bill fold is a fashion ten year quarter. A quarter minute in 1976, my dad had jars Fulham, so along with everything else that, part of my uniform, I told one of those in remembrance of him. And until I started thinking about all my everyday carry items to tell you all about, I never really seen how much connection there was to the members of my family who passed away. But now I do, and talking about each one of them makes me smile. I've always fancied a good pocket watch, and on one Father's Day, my wife and little girl Bailey gave me one. It came all the way from London, England, and it keeps time like a man possessed. It has a decorative silver coon attached to a short chain on the other end that hangs on the outside of the bib overalls. Now for all those that have a pair of overalls, real overalls, and you never quite figured out what that slit was above the bill of the pockets, and the small hidden pocket selling into the same on the bib. If you didn't know what that was for, stand by for news. It's for your pocket watch, Jane, and your pocket watch. The watch is obviously for telling time, but the fog tails everyone a little bit about you. It makes a statement without making one. I like to think that when folks see mine it, they see a country boy that's proud to where he came from, proud of the folks who raised him and even more proud to share these stories. Thank you so much for listening.

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