Friday, September 17, 2010

billy goat story

I'm a storyteller: a liar by trade. I love stories, always have. Some, if not most of the stuff I take the time to type right here, is true -- at least true in my memory which is faulty by anyone's standards.

But today was staff appreciation day, and we boss-types made breakfast for the crew. Picture me, sitting with my coworkers around the breakfast table, talking about goat meat. I think the general topic was greek food. It seemed like the perfect time to tell the only story I have about goat meat. I mean, wouldn't you? If you had a story about goat meat you'd tell it, right? I don't think everyone has a story like that. So.

When I was a hippie, living way up Yale Creek in a somewhat communal setting, there was this guy we called Hippie Dennis who was passing through the Applegate Valley. He lived in his big navy blue delivery van and had a billy goat. I don't know about you, but I can't stand billy goats. They jump on your car hood and suck their own genitals. Right? So this goat was all over the place, getting into our gardens, over any fence, unmannered as his owner who he co-habitated with in the big delivery van. He couldn't keep track of that goat anymore than he could perform his own personal hygiene.

It was high summer-- the perfect time for many outdoor festivities, a big BBQ would be one example. We invited everybody from Sterling Creek on up to Dog Fork and McKee Bridge. We even invited Dennis. It was a beautiful day and we had a really nice time. The meat was a little tough and Dennis kept asking if we'd seen his goat, but we'd just offer him another plate of food.

So this story may have worked better among less civilized sorts. The problem is that most of the people I hang out with these days are pretty civilized or at least politically conscious, and it left me feeling, well, criminally insane.

Personally, I think the story is kind of funny. I found myself defending the community act to kill the goat. But in retrospect, I suppose it was wrong. Okay, it was wrong. Sue me. Situationally and culturally, it didn't seem like it at the time. But once again, after I told my little story, my coworkers had that look about them -- that look that I've learned is a subtle form of fear -- or at the very least, psychological discomfort, the kind of look that made me want to say, "Jesus, its not like I shot the fucking goat myself, painted my naked body with its blood, danced around the fire and still carry the gun in my purse or anything..." but that would be little comfort to my nervous workmates. Geeez. You can't kill anything these days without somebody jumping up in righteous protest.

They should hear the stories I don't tell.

7 comments:

Kristiana said...

HA! That's a great story! Both stories, I mean. I'm guessing they don't read your blog.

someone said...

oh god I hope not.

Anonymous said...

the younger goat was named can-can

Anonymous said...

dennis showed up with an old lady, a baby, several chickens and a goat in a hippiefied bread van.
they severally left him. last saw D. at a barter fair in Ruch back a few...

Anonymous said...

(final revision) denny suddenly materialized one day, as folks did, in a Metro van from Michigan containing his old lady, a baby, several chickens, a goat,tools, tipi and Ron. Old Lady looked around and said "I'm gone". denny and ron set up the tipi on yale creek. the chickens disappeared as did the goat. Ron ran off with Carnival Lady to join up with the show down in Turlock. denny and ron had a rock group previously. ron was a guitar genius. denny, as far as i could tell could play only a very raunchy "harlem nocturne" on the sax of no redeeming social value....

someone said...

Anonymous, please identify yourself. I'd love to know who you are.

L. said...

now surely anyone cannot miss the charm in your story!!