Don’t Tell Mama!

Now ya’ll have heard me talk about my oldest brother Randy and I’m here to testify that an older brother will kill a younger brother off at any opportunity. Being the youngest in the family had its up and downs and this one of those downs… and I mean upside down.

My dear mother, who is a saint, would go to town every Saturday morning. While she was gone we would hold the fort down until she got home. The last thing out of her mouth when she was headed for the car was, “Ya’ll try to get along and don’t kill each other!” There never had been a killing to my recollection, but some near death experiences.

Randy was the oldest and he always thought he was in charge. This day was no different.

Randy had his ole grass rope out that morning and was roping Daddy’s anvil. When I rounded the corner Randy yelled,  “Run and I throw a heel loop.” Now I never minded the heel loops, it was the jerking down and dragging that I never could get used to.

After a good dragging around the yard, I felt like I had been in the branding pen on the wrong end of the rope for too long. I saw my chance to make a break for it and bolted for the house. About the time I was near the porch and in the clear a wide loop made its way around and caught me deep- right above the knee’s. Tied and trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey.

Well folks what happened next still brings back bad memories of childhood.

Randy commenced in taking off my boots, jeans and shirt and throwed one end of his rope over the elm limb that hung over the driveway. Now don’t panic just yet, at least the rope wasn’t around my neck- it was around my ankles. He then made two wraps and a hooey and there I was hanging upside down from that ole elm tree…naked.

Then, in his big brother ominous tone, Randy uttered these words:   “You tell mama what happened and I will beat your butt!”

Let’s just think about this for a minute. My mother has seen a lot of things happen to us kids but this might take the cake. Right here under this ole elm is where she always parks that car, and with me hanging there like a Christmas ornament how is she not going to notice? So I remember asking Randy if he actually thought Mama was going to think I did this all by myself?!

After an hour of hanging in that ole tree, my mother pulled in from town just like clockwork. I can still hear them words she said today. She took one quick look up at me and as she headed toward the house in an irritated tone said, “When you quit playing around up there in that tree, put your britches on and help me carry them groceries in. And if I catch you up there again naked I’m going to tan your hide!”

Now, if there is a moral to this story I sure would like to know it.

I did learn two things that day while swinging upside down: run faster and cut that low hanging limb from that ole elm!

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