by Delbert Trew
Stand-up comedians for the Lord
occupations experience everyday hazards quite like that of the cowboy.
There's something about being out in the boondocks tending livestock
that draws trouble like a lightning rod draws strikes. Some adhere
to a theory that God made cowboys and their cowboy way of life just
so he could enjoy an occasional laugh himself.
Tom was known for being tight with his money and started replacing
rusted water tanks with huge, used equipment tires he bought at the
Army Surplus Store. The top could be removed with a sharp knife, then
scoot the remainder under the lead pipe of the windmill, spread black
plastic sheeting in the bottom and bingo, he had a cheap, rustproof
water tank for cattle.
Tom discovered an added bonus of bumping the rubber tire with his
pickup during cold weather, which broke up the ice inside, saving
ax work on his part.
He came into the coffee shop one morning with black eyes, sore nose
and bleeding lips. It seemed he had approached the rubber tank a little
too fast and his wheels slid on the frozen ground. When he hit the
tank, his air-bag exploded, causing the injuries.
I'll bet the Lord slapped his knees at that incident.
story tells of a South Texas native, used to feeding round bales of
hay, who moved to a new job in Montana. When winter came, he unloaded
a big round bale on a hill above his corrals, cut the strings and
proceeded to bump the roll with his pickup to unroll the hay just
like down in Texas.
He didn't realize that the bales in wintery Montana might be frozen
solid. After a bump off the edge of the hill, the bale took on a life
of its own, gaining momentum with every revolution. He sat in his
warm pickup watching the bale smash down three sections of corral
fence, turn over two trash barrels, scattering trash everywhere, and
finally stopping after crashing into the side of his wife's car.
I can see the Lord setting up that stunt and wiping tears from his
of my personal ranching experiences involved a pet cow that learned
to place her front feet on the back bumper of my feed pickup, rear
upward until she could reach the paper feed sacks, then steal a few
extra tidbits of feed for herself. I always enjoyed her trick and
often scratched her back as she committed the crime.
One morning her foot slipped, wedging her foot in between the pickup
body and the metal covering the top of the bumper. There was no way
to extract the cow's foot without crippling aftereffects. I had to
walk three miles into a stiff north wind, hook up the welding trailer
to a second pickup and travel back to the scene of the accident, using
an acetylene torch cut the critter free.
I believe the Lord went overboard this time in his hijinks as the
torch sparks set the grass on fire and I had to spend some anxious
moments throwing dirt under my pickup to contain the flames. I sure
hope he enjoyed the morning's escapade more than I did.
© Delbert Trew
"It's All Trew"
21, 2006 column