Chiseled, Headless Figures

I Know My Rights, Fuzz 

I’ve been pulled over by the local sheriffs twice in the past two weeks—both times when coming home from band practice at sometime after eleven o‘clock. The first time I saw it coming; I knew I was driving with only one functioning headlight. That headlight pissed me off. It isn’t easy to change a light on an eighties-era Toyota truck, and I’d only installed the malfunctioning unit less than a year before. So I was procrastinating, and not surprised when the patrol car lit me up.

The second stop came last night, and this is one I haven’t heard before. The sheriff told me that the reason he pulled me over was because the tow hitch on my truck partially obscured my license plate. I’m starting to feel like they are out to get me.

Anyway, neither stop was any big deal, because I don’t have outstanding warrants and I wasn’t drunk.

That being said, my attempt at maintaining sobriety for the entire month of February has been an utter failure. I broke fast on Valentine’s Day for champagne with Trish—no big deal. But after that the floodgates opened and the beers started going down. By the time the Daytona 500 rolled around I found myself picking up a 30-pack of Keystone light— barely beer, really—and a ten dollar box of blush wine. I prefer red, Trish likes white, so we compromise with a variety neither of us really enjoy that much.

Rain Delay 

The Daytona 500 was awesome—or so I’ve read. After a six and a half hour rain and severe weather delay that bumped the race from any television channels my digital antenna receives, Dale Earnhardt Junior, the Pied Piper of NASCAR, came home victorious. It’s Dale’s second victory in the Great American Race, and his first top finish in fifty five races.

The rain here this morning kind of caught me off my guard. I managed to flip the canoe over in preparation, but Manny, a store mannequin Trish picked up for twenty five bucks at the Discovery Shoppe, is standing unprotected and looking quite fetching—his lightweight button down shirt casually draped over one shoulder and the rain water running down his chiseled, headless figure.

Some of the oak trees on the property are already starting to leaf out—it seems like they only dropped the last of their leaves a few weeks ago. Winter feels like a figment of my imagination, or maybe a rumor. The coming of spring is confirmed as I peer out at the green grass—it’s growing so fast I can almost watch it. This is accompanied by the inevitable sense of panic as I realize the tractor is still on the fritz and I really need to pick up a better push mower and weed whacker. All things in their time, I guess. In the mean-time I will enjoy the four days of rain we’ve got coming to us and keep my fingers crossed for more.

Bob Howard has been living, working, and writing in Northern Califonria since he moved to Chico in early 2000. In January 2011, he and his wife Trish relocated to Los Molinos, 30 minutes north of Chico, where they are the proud proprietors of the Double Happiness Farm. There they grow organic food, ornamental plants and trees, and generally work to enjoy the beauty of this great region.