Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Lean Cowboy Who Only Wanted a Drink...

A lean, rawboned cowboy rides into town; his gun is slung lower than is usual for a cattle man and the bottom of his holster is tied down to his leg with a leather thong. He walks into the towns’ only saloon and bellies up to the bar.

The bartender looks a question at him and he asks for a shot of Red Eye whiskey. The barkeep sets a shot glass in front of him and pours it full of the yellow liquid. The cowboy throws a quarter on the bar and picks up the glass and sips whiskey from it.

He looks around the barroom and sees no one or nothing that interests him. He stares into the shot glass, seeing nothing except the dim light reflecting off the cheap, yellow whiskey. He raises the glass to his lips, tips the glass quickly and swallows the rest.

He motions for another and puts another quarter on the bar. Just then, the bat wing doors open noisily and a short, stocky cowboy stomps in, obviously attempting to make as much noise as he can. He wants everyone to pay attention to him. He is a man who is very important to no one except himself, and he makes up for that unimportance with boisterous behavior.

He walks to the bar and gruffly orders a whiskey. The bartender grins at him and brings a bottle to set in front of him.

“How you doin’, Web,” he asks. The cowboy nods hello and picks up the bottle and pours a glass full of the whiskey and holds it up toward the first cowboy and says,”Lookin’ at ya’!"

The lean cowboy nods and picks up his own glass and sips from it.

“How about another,” he says to the lean cowboy.

“No thanks,” the man answers, “Two’s my limit.”

“Oh, hell, come on. I don’t like to drink alone. One more won’t hurt ya.’”

“Maybe next time,” says the lean cowboy, and he turns to go.

The stocky man steps in front of him and holds up a hand.

“Hold it, “says the stocky man, “I offered you a drink. I’d consider it an insult if you turn it down."

The lean cowboy looks directly into the eyes of the other man. “Please stand aside,” he says hesitantly. “I don’t want no trouble. I gotta go.”

The stocky man mistakes hesitancy for fear and steps toward the lean man. “You scared?” he asks. Maybe you shouldn’t have come in here. This is a mans’ bar and sissies ain’t welcome. Now, you’re gonna have a drink with me or I’m gonna plug you!”

The lean man stiffened and his eyes flashed. He saw that a couple more men had come into the bar and he could tell they were friends of the stocky man. The stocky man glanced at them and said, “Well, boys, are you ready for a show?”

The men smiled at that. They knew Web, the stocky man, was fast with a pistol; the fastest around here, for sure and they didn’t think the lean man would have much of a chance against him. “Sure, Web,” one of them said, “It might be fun!”

The stranger looked at Web. “I don’t want no trouble,” he said. He stepped to the side and started out but the stocky man stayed in front of him.

“You’re gonna have a drink with me or you ain’t leavin’ here”

“Mister,” the stranger said, “A drink ain’t worth dyin’ for.”

The stocky man’s hand dropped to his pistol. A shot rang out and the stocky man dropped to the floor, a bullet through his heart. His gun had barely cleared the holster.

The stranger looked at the men then toward the bartender.

“You all saw what happened, didn’t you?”

The bartender said he did and one of the other men said he did but the other man was silent.

“I didn’t see anything but that you picked a fight and drew first. Web was a friend of mine; just like a brother and I ain’t gonna let you get away with this.”

The stranger stiffened and faced the man. He had holstered his gun. Now his hand hovered near his pistol butt. He waited.

The man didn’t make a move. “I won’t do nothin’ right now,” he said. “I know you can beat me to the draw. I’ll get you, though, in my own time.”

The lean man realized what the man was saying and he asked. “You mean you’ll bushwhack me when I ain’t lookin? You’d ambush me?”

“You got it,” the man said. “You won’t see it comin’!”

The stranger looked at the bartender. “You saw what happened. Is this guy as good a friend to the guy as he says he is? Do you think he will lay for me?”

The bartender says he thinks the man will do what he says. He always has.

The stranger says, “I won’t look over my shoulder the rest of my life. Tell the law what you saw here.”

Then he drew his gun and shot the man dead.

“Now it’s done,” he said and he walked out the door, mounted his horse and rode away.

This will be a true story.

The lean man is Israel. The stocky man is Iran. The coward is Syria. What is the US?



Blogger jel said...

hey JC,

eye opening stuff here!
keep it up!

oh and thanks for the comment about the book ,

take care

3:06 AM  
Blogger Grizzly Mama said...

Dropping by to wish you a blessed INdependence Day. Love the story.

9:27 PM  
Blogger J C said...

Thanks, jel and, you're welcome.

Same to you, GM,-we're surely blessed and I hope it stays that way!

6:23 AM  

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