We’d both attended a hunter’s safety course that summer, mandated by law. Pop and Bird were nonplussed. What could some game warden with a B.S. in wildlife management teach us about the sporting life? It was an insult. Not to me. I was curious as to what other men might teach me, particularly men who may have written books on such matters, or at least men who had read those books, or perhaps any book.
One thing I love to do during the holidays is sit around and tell stories with family. It’s just such a good way to remind myself of why I love them, and why I live in another state. We told a lot of stories this past Thanksgiving, my father and me sitting at the table over breakfast, remembering what it was like back then, when I was so small and full of potential, and he was so large and full of ideas about how to kill things.
People get weird about school. When you’re a kid, you go where you’re told. But when you’re a parent, you care, because your choice will say a lot about you, and what god you love, and how comfortable you are with your children having friends who have witnessed a murder or know what a bail bondsman is.
On Friday, May 12, 1995, I stepped onto a bus in Jackson, Mississippi, bound for West Yellowstone, Montana. The journey would take four days, with no stops for anything but gas and cigarettes and the occasional disemboweling of one passenger by another. When I said goodbye, my father, who only embraces things when he is trying to kill them, hugged me. It was his way of saying: Your mother thinks you might die.
Let me start off by saying that I am not a gun nut. But really, is it wrong to be nuts about guns? And can you tell if I have a gun in my pants right now? Because maybe I do, maybe I don’t. This is my right, as an American, to put or not put things in my pants.