Gettin’ Down In A Small Town

I think I’ve told y’all a time or three how very much I love my community. When we aren’t busy painting things John Deere green on hot summer nights, or pulling awesome pranks on another, we are hosting a slew of events – all of which are named after a vegetable or farm animal. The 4th of July Potato Festival kicks off the festivities and is soon followed by the Quarterback Club Community Cookout and Cow Plop. Just when we are starting to get bored again, we end the summer with a bang (or a buck) with Mule Day.

What is Mule Day you ask? Well, I’d love to show you some personal photos but it was so crowded this year I couldn’t get anywhere near the arena. I’ve included a stock photo instead. My town has 800 citizens give or take; however, on Mule Day weekend there are anywhere from 12-15,000 people here – as in almost 20x our population.

(Photo courtesy of

The draw of Mule Day is a Mule Pull competition where teams from several states bring mule teams to see which ones can pull the most weight. They are hitched to slides stacked with cement blocks and weight is added until they can no longer pull. It’s really a painful thing to watch but don’t worry, I’m assured the screaming, snot-slingin‘ mules are having the time of their lives.

Here’s my Girl. She insisted on theme dressing. I don’t mind so much when the theme is Cowgirl versus Bratz Doll. She actually asked me this morning if I would pick out “some very tiny clothes” for her to wear to school. Umm, that would be a negative.

Riding the ponies in her non-Daisy Dukes.

Boy Number One. Oh my. He bought these glasses at one of the junk vendors and is convinced he’s Eric Estrada from CHiPs. I’m pretty sure the lenses in these things are recycled mirrors that hang in the corner of old gas stations and supermarkets.

Here’s Boy Two packin‘ the $5 heat he bought from the Asian arms dealer. You think I’m kidding. There was a guy there with two booths (I use the term booths loosely…he was actually selling them out of the back of his SUV) filled with bb guns, air soft rifles, and TASERS. Yes, you heard me right. For the low, low price of $15 you could purchase a personal electrocution device. I can’t think of a better thing to sell hundreds of young boys bent on a day of mischief.

Speaking of a day of mischief, I don’t have a picture of Number Three boy. He also bought one of the bb guns. Trouble is, he bought it from the Arms Dealer’s satellite location and it didn’t come with bb’s – even though it was the exact model Boy Two bought that included a package of ammo. Boy 3 asked the man to give him some bb’s and he was told to go away.

Mom to the rescue.

I went to the booth and showed the man both of the gun cases to prove that yes, one had bb’s and so should the other. He told me that his booth didn’t include the bb’s so I asked him to return our money. Who needs a gun with no bullets, right? In a very nice gesture, he not only gave us the small pack of bb’s that should have been included, but he gave us a very large container full. Nothing like a gun vendor who specializes in customer service.

We thanked the man for his generosity and I walked away pleased the kids had plenty of bb’s for their little toy guns.

And the fact I just typed that last sentence still baffles me.

I took the ammo from the boys because 8 year old boy + gun + unlimited bullets + large crowd = TROUBLE. What I didn’t know is that Boy Three snuck the ammo and got into a gun war with another boy. What I also didn’t know is that he shot a lady in the crowd WHO WAS NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT IN THE LEAST. Dear, sweet woman. I wasn’t there but please accept my humble apologies. The boy is grounded for life it if makes it sting any less.

In the meantime, The Girl and I found Luke’s cousins who show horses at Mule Day every year. In a strange twist, they were coming to this festival for years before Luke and I ever moved here. Anyway, The Girl looks forward to seeing her cousins Raven and Ramsey compete and to boot, gets a ride in their miniature horse wagon.

We were blissfully unaware of the gunfire taking place elsewhere in the park.

So now, summer is winding down and the season of rolling yards and Friday night football is upon us.

Have I mentioned I love it here?

P.S. Deedra just got her Mule Day pictures posted. Girlfriend captured the true flava of the day.