We Are NOT the Clampetts

Because many of the events we experience relate directly to John’s love of hunting, his dogs, and life in the country, a few of my co-workers think we are somewhat of a present day anomaly.  In other words, they think we are hillbillies, red-necks, and/or throwbacks to an earlier, simpler way of life.  I find myself constantly trying to explain how our adventures are not that different from other people who embrace the rural lifestyle, and we really do have a modicum of sophistication and refinement.  Unfortunately, two recent events have made me re-evaluate my claims.

The first incident was the discovery of a cow leg bone in my yard.  Apparently John didn’t do a very thorough job of burying the remnants of his most recent acquisition from the local feedlot, and the dogs thought it was more convenient to have part of the carcass outside the back door.  That alone wouldn’t have been a big deal, but his lack of concern regarding the removal of said leg bone was the clincher.

“Did you notice the dogs dragged a leg bone from that cow into the yard?” I asked.

“Yes, I didn’t do a very good job disposing of that last one,” John replied.

“So do you have a plan for getting rid of it?” I continued.

“As long as it’s this cold, I didn’t think it would be a problem.  It doesn’t stink and it’s not drawing flies.”

I tried to explain to him that that while eliminating stench and pests were important aspects of the quality of life I wanted to maintain, aesthetics also played an important role.  My complaints weren’t completely ignored, but it still took two days for the leg bone to disappear.

The second event occurred on the way to work this morning.  About 2 miles from the house I saw a dead raccoon on the road.  I immediately called John to tell him the location and condition, and he drove over to pick it up.  As I hung up from the call, I suddenly realized that living around a hillbilly is a lot like living with zombies.  Sooner or later you will become one.  That revelation caused me to reflect on the qualities that defined the most famous hillbilly family, the Clampetts.  Jed, Granny, Jethro, and Elly May might have been naive, but they were also honest, industrious, compassionate, loving, and dependable.  Their word was their bond, and they usually got the better of the greedy, self-centered, sophisticates they encountered each week.

I guess if I had to choose between simple and sophisticated, the decision would be a fairly easy one to make.  Don’t get me wrong, I will never ignore cow carcasses in the yard, but there are definitely worse things to be than the Clampetts.

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