During that first session I sat and listened to get an idea of what subjects were being discussed that I could join in with. I don’t know diddly about hog farming or the union situation at Acme Manufacturing, so I followed the old dictate of “an idiot should be seen, not heard.” The next morning I tumbled out of bed and didn’t bother to brush my teeth since everyone else also had bad breath. I wasn’t going to do something to make me an outcast this soon. Thank heavens for small favors when someone brought up the subject of dogs, especially the hunting variety.
Now, here was a subject I thought I could sink my teeth into alongside the best of them. For thirty minutes one breed or another was dissected for its merits or shortcomings. One of the older gentlemen related his younger days of hunting with a muzzle loader behind Ol Blue. The others claimed he was old enough that a club was a modern weapon back then. When a break in the action came I decided to offer my two cents worth.
“I used to have a cocker spaniel that kept the birds shooed out of our cherry tree”. You would think I had just called Eisenhower a boot legger. It got real quiet while the others inspected the ceiling tiles and I shrank down into my seat. Thank goodness it was time to disband for another day.
One morning, one of the gang started relating his latest fishing adventure. That’s like popping the cork on a jug of moonshine in a chain gang. When that happens, the normal church going person will fold his tent and head for the door because the only subject that generates more lies are dog stories. If you’ve never been in a group of eight or nine fellows, some of whom were probably involved in the civil war, and the subject of fishing comes up, you haven’t experienced one of the gaudier facets of life. Best types of rods, killer baits or lures, best places to fish and enough monster fish to make even the Japanese blush with envy. Then in a slight pause in the action I made another supreme social blunder.