John Hicks

I was up early, filling water bottles and charging batteries. I checked out a few maps. It’s always a good thing to know where you’re going in my corner of Alabama, especially if you live in the middle of nowhere and your destination is even more remote.

Chance of rain, according to the forecast. I was ignoring the gray skies. Given the vicissitudes of 21st century weather, I wouldn’t have been surprised if it had started raining locomotives and Gummi Bears.

Does anyone really know what the weather is going to do these days? I keep waiting for a TV weatherperson to tell it like it is:

“Right now it’s pretty nice out there. Last time I looked out the window, anyway. The forecast for tomorrow is … (shrugs). Hey, your guess is good as mine, Einstein! It might be a beautiful spring day, or we might experience a meteorological event straight out of the Old Testament. My advice, folks, is have a few drinks and don’t worry about it. I’ve been into the Absolut since lunch, and, frankly, I feel great. [Expletive] the [expletive] weather. Back to you, Todd.”

John Hicks

The mowers had been idle in the shed for months, but they cranked right up.

There is a long list of maintenance rules for the mowers, which I ignore in much the same way I ignore everything that stands between me and noisy fun.

Oil? Check. Gas? Topped off. Let’s rock!

One must also believe the mower will start. It is very important to have faith in the machine. Do not assume there will be trouble. Do not let doubt cloud your mind. This angers the machine gods.

If you had to mow the Ponderosa every week, you would indulge in some magical realism, too.

Bob Johnson loves the riding mower. He stays about ten yards ahead of me in order to convince himself he is being chased, which is always more fun than not being chased.

This is not Thunderdome, Bob Johnson. I don’t ever catch you because I’m not chasing you. I am making the grass shorter, you dope. The only thing you are winning is best supporting goober.

John Hicks

Lately I’ve fallen into the routine of putting my alarm clock on the radio setting.

Instead of the usual hellish bleat (a suitable warning for nuclear attack or biohazard breach), I am treated to the susurrations of those crazed liberals over at NPR.

You know the bunch I’m talking about. They can’t wait for the second Obama term so they can take to the streets singing “La Marseillaise” and start chopping the heads off Real Americans.

Liberalism leads to socialism, communism and, finally, soccer. Then Satan appears on the pitch and all kinds of gnarly CGI is unleashed. Yep. That’s how it all goes down.

John Hicks

This is my first post from the newly improved Executive Cowboy Lounge, high atop Coburn Mountain, Alabama.

It is raining, with thunder and lightning. The PC should not even be plugged in. I’ve already lost one hard drive to lightning. (Did I learn my lesson the last time I lost all my data? Do I now take great pains to back everything up? Nope. I’m what mental-health professionals and ex-girlfriends refer to as an idiot. Shoe. Foot. Shoe on foot.)

But this week has been a real doozey, as we say in polite company, and the deadline looms. Yes, I take risks. Because I care, gentle readers. I’m afraid if I don’t show up on time every week, all six of you will forget about me. And, shoot, I’m sworn to fun.