Mountain Oyster Fry

Once a year the cattle farmers of Apache pool their resources and get together to wrassle calves (or something like that).
I was pulled in to the gathering and closely watched to see if this boy from Africa knew anything. At all. Well, they knew I didn’t by then, but I was good for a laugh! When I first got to Apache the local cowboys asked me if I could help them round up 18 cows. The maths nerd in me said, ‘Yes, of course. – That’s 20 cows.’ (actually, that’s a Jake Lambert joke, but not far off the truth!). I had been found wanting as a farmer more than once before.

We rounded up the calves, corralled them and roped them, brung them down and trussed them up.

We then: De-horned them with pincers; Cauterised the stumps with a red-hot metal ‘dome’; Injected them – inoculation; Castrated them with a pen-knife (not me!); Branded them with a red-hot branding iron. I hovered around, just of out of range of doing anything useful.

okla wrangling calves_2
– summing like this –

Then released them into the next pen, where they stood around bleating with a WTF!? expression on their dials.

After a long day we went home, washed up and gathered in Walter & Pug Hrbacek’s barn for the Big Annual Mountain Oyster Fry, where we fried mountain oysters and ate them covered in batter, washing them down with Coors beer.

What reminded me about this eventful day was this:

Ball with Jesus_Testicle
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Waddaya mean you’ve never heard of Chuck Berry?!

Jim Stanton was aghast! He had just invited me along to a rock concert in Oklahoma City and I had immediately accepted. Now he was exclaiming: Don’t say that! Don’t say you don’t know who Chuck Berry is!

My motto in Apache was I only say yes to all invitations to travel. Only YES! Yes please! I only have one short year; Gotta go everywhere! Gotta dodge school!

His follow-up questions had forced me to admit my ignorance. But I was willing to learn, I had a ball and I have been a Chuck Berry fan ever since!

What I didn’t tell Jim is I had even less heard of Bo Diddley! He featured with Chuck and they rocked up a storm. “My ding-a-ling” was really big just then! OK, that didn’t sound right, but anyway . . knowwaddimean. . .

He played all his hits, including “Johnny B. Goode,” “Maybelline,” “Nadine,” “No Particular Place to Go,” “Reelin’ and Rockin’,” “Roll Over Beethoven,” “Surfin’ U.S.A,” “Sweet Little Sixteen,” . . .

That was 1973. Recently I saw a 2014 pic of Jim on the internets. That’s him in the red T.

Hi Jim! Never forgotten! Thought of you again when Chuck died aged 90 this year – 2017.

jim-stainton

Some Chuck Berry:
– “People don’t want to see seventeen pieces in neckties. They wanna see some jeans, some gettin’ down and some wigglin’.”
– “I love poetry. I love rhyming. Do you know, there are poets who don’t rhyme? Shakespeare did not rhyme most of the time and that’s why I don’t like him.”
– “It amazes me when I hear people say ‘I want to go out and find out who I am’. I always knew who I was. I was going to be famous if it killed me.”
– “I would sing the blues if I had the blues.”
——-oo000ooo——-
Bo

In 1963, Bo Diddley starred in a UK concert tour with the Everly Brothers and Little Richard. The supporting act was a little up-and-coming outfit called The Rolling Stones.

——-ooo000ooo——-

Job Titles & Responsibilities

My host Dad Jim was vice-president of the local bank. One morning he and his friend Tom the president were strategising and planning (OK, drinking coffee), in Tom’s office, having got in earlier through the back door (staff entrance).

One of the ladies popped her head in: “It’s opening time and a dog has left a great big “do” right in the entrance. It needs to be cleaned up, please gentlemen”.

Tom looks at Jim: “Well Jim, you’re in charge of deposits!”

.

This pic is the old Apache State Bank, not Tom’s bank. Also known as American National Bank; The Inman Building; Corner of Evans and Coblake Avenues, Apache