My cousin Steven and I were born 32 days apart. Because of this, our parents mostly raised us together. We’re closer than most siblings. We used to spend part of each summer at my house and part of each summer at his house as children. He is now a newly minted State Trooper. He just got his first assigment to a Trooper station, so I had to go visit. Once I get there, I find out who his cronies are and ask them, very innocently, if they really let him have a real gun.
His Boss: Of course we have real guns. It’s part of the job.
Me: Oh, but he has such problems with firearms.
His Boss (curious) : What kind of trouble?
Me: Oh, he’s almost gotten both of us killed before.
His Boss (very curious now): How did that happen?
So of course I have to tell the story….Once upon a time when we were 9…..
When we were at his house, it was our job to patrol my Aunt’s pecan grove, pellet guns in hand, in search of her “great enemy”. The great enemy was none other than the common squirrel or as one friend calls them “rats in drag”. One sunny afternoon, we were wandering through the pecan grove in seach of our fuzzy tailed adversaries. My cousin spots a rather large shrub moving pretty violently and starts to raise his pellet rifle.
Me: That’s not a squirrel
Him : Sure it is. What else is out here?
Me: Uh…squirrels don’t live in bushes.
Him: You’re a girl. What do you know?
Me: I know that squirrels don’t hang out in bushes.
Before I can stop him, he’s aimed and fired at the moving bush. Roughly two seconds later the bush explodes. It looks like someone has dynamited it. Chuncks of shrubbery are flying through the air. When it all clears, standing where the bush existed moments before is large feral pig. I’d place his weight at about 250-300 lbs. For those of you who have cute, cuddly connotations of pigs like “Charlotte’s Web” and “Piglet and Pooh”, let me disabuse you of these notions now. These animals are 150 lbs – 400lbs in weight. They have 5″ – 8″ long tusks and they *will* eat you. Here we stand, frozen not forty feet away from an enraged feral pig who is looking around for his tormentor. As he turns his head, scanning the area, I catch a glint of metal. Steven could not have done this if he tried. Lodged squarely between the pig’s nostrils is his pellet.
Me: I told you squirrels don’t live in bushes!
Him: Holy sh&%!
About that time the pig zooms in on us and lets out a squeal of pure, unadulterated rage.
The pig charges as we scramble up a nearby tree. I think we might have set a land speed record getting to that tree. We spent hours in that tree with the pig using his tusks to try to root it up in order to get at us. Eventually, the pig gets tired and starts to trot away. Steven, in his infinite male wisdom, pulls his shoe off and throws it at the pig.
Me: Nice move, exlax!
Him: What? He’s leaving.
It smacks the pig squarely in the rump. The pig squeals and comes back to start trying to root the tree up again.
Me: Do that again, and I’m pushing you out of the tree.
Him: What’s the big deal?
Me: I’ve been sitting on a tree limb for 6 hours now because you’re an idiot and my a&& hurts!
I seriously consider pushing Steven out of the tree anyway, but deicde that I don’t want the whooping I’ll get if I come home without him. Finally, the pig gets tired again and heads off. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Steven start to remove his shoe. I elbow him in the ribs and almost knock him out of the tree so his shoe stays on this time. Once we’re fairly certain the pig is gone, we climb down, retreive our pellet guns, and limp home. Stephen got two whoopings – one for loosing his shoe (they were brand new) and the other for shooting at something besides a squirrel.
His Boss (laughing): No way!
Me: That’s really how it happened.
Steven (returning with coffee and donuts): Oh no! You told them the pig story!
Me: Yep. Revenge for making me sit in a tree for 9 hours straight in a dress. Besides, who better to appreciate it than police?
His Co-workers: Soooooeeeeeyyyyyy!