Sunday, October 30, 2011

Bow and Arrow Adventure

I was 13 years old. My neighbor and I had both acquired bows and arrows. We built a sod house on the edge of a 12-foot embankment. It was exactly like the sod houses that were built on the prairies back in early frontier days – exactly! Ours was not an actual house because it only had walls. We never did figure out how to build roofs. Soon after building this fine sod hideaway, we poked a look-out hole through the side of one wall.

One day, we decided it would be a really great idea for one of us to shoot arrows at the lookout hole, while the other looked through the hole.
It was a game filled with excitement and danger. The sod walls were about eight inches thick, so there was no real risk of the arrow blasting its way through the sod and impaling us. Also, we were not that great of shots, so the likelihood of the arrow actually entering the lookout hole seemed highly unlikely. At this point in time, no one had explained the law of averages to me. Well regardless, we reasoned that in the unlikely event that the arrow did fly into the hole, the person looking through the hole would simply move his head to the side, allowing the arrow to fly harmlessly by.
I wonder what age God actually turns the key to engage the brain of a teenage boy. Something to think about.
This game seemed logical, yet still thick with daring competition. Who could scare the other person the most? This question added a fine flavor of intrigue to the challenge. I was sure I would outdo my neighbor by sending him leaping sideways to the ground to protect himself from my arrows.
Sure enough, one of my arrows flew as true and pretty as a swallow catching a gnat out of mid-air. The arrow sailed straight toward the lookout hole, and my neighbor did the logical thing--he moved his head aside as my arrow flew harmlessly by inches away. What an adrenalin rush! This kept the arrows flying for some time.
There came a time in the shooting, I was looking through the hole. Suddenly, my neighbor let his arrow fly and as sure as a shot that could be made the arrow came straight for the hole. I saw it coming right for the hole and I swear that arrow hypnotized me. I did not and could not move. That arrow smacked me right in the middle of the forehead knocking me down.  

Our game ended as the sound of arrow hitting skull brought my neighbor dashing over to see the blood rolling down my face into my eyes. I was lucky that the light target arrow had not the momentum, speed, or weight to penetrate the bone.

It’s memories like this that give me a strong inclination to believe in natural selection, but the theory falls completely apart because here I am still writing.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Grayquill Musings Chapter One

I have Only so Many Stories

Often my children chide me for retelling my stories. I always have the same response. And frankly, it is a pretty good one. “Now kids, a man has only so many stories. Some are worth only telling once, but there are those others that are worth telling over and over, so just be quiet and listen.”
My kids were shaking their heads as I retold them the story of how their mother put the hustle on me before we were even dating. They rolled their eyes – there dad goes again. Does he not remember telling us this story a million times before?
“You see, I was a catch. I mean, it has to be true, or why would she put the moves on me? That is just plain logic.” My son blurted out, “Dad! We know the story, and we are not going to believe it this time either. There is no way MOM put any moves on YOU. Look at mom, and look at you--does that make any sense at all?”
My oldest daughter pipes in, “Yeah dad, you just said be logical. Oh my goodness! And, besides mom would never do that.” Perception is reality.
Do you remember the days when your kids believed you? When they ran to meet you at the door, screaming “daddy, daddy” hugging your neck? You could tell them anything, and they would believe it. Oh yes, those were the days.
Continuing on with my story, “Excuse me? You just ask your mother. She will agree with me completely. So, do you mind if I continue?” She shook her head like I was crazy and began laughing. My son had put his head down ignoring me and began to work on his grilled cheese sandwich. My oldest daughter and son often think alike. But my sweet, wonderful youngest daughter was smiling…But her smile was different, kind of dreamy like. “Dad, tell the story! I love it!” See how sweet she is?
If truth be told, I believe all my children love hearing this story. What child does not want to hear the love story of their parents? Of course they do!
Well, I bet you are all dying to hear this story too. But the key word in “short stories” is “short.” So I just don’t have the space this time. Maybe next time; stay tuned.