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The Book of Calvin
A Collection of Humorous Essays
Copyright 2002 by Bobby Matherne
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Hunting the Road Elephant
It was another typical day when Darlene popped her head into Calvin's office, “Mr. Preston, it's Nairobi on the phone. They say they have a problem that only the ‘Wild One’ can handle.”
“Oh Baby, Oh Baby, it's probably another Road Elephant! By the way, Darlene, you look very secretarial this morning.”
“Hello, Nairobi!” Calvin shouted into the phone as he snapped the handset to his ear, pulling the base of the phone onto the floor with a loud noise. “Wow. You made me ring my bell!” "Ok, ok," Calvin thought to himself, "I'd better calm my jets."
He was off the phone in a flash and headed to his Lear jet for an immediate flight to darkest Africa to hunt down another rogue elephant. In his hurry to leave for the airport he pinned Darlene's badge by mistake on his shirt. When he tried to get through security, the captain laughed out loud when he saw the badge. “Calvin,” he said, “you're a freakin' idiot!”
“I am not a freakin' idiot!” Calvin shot back. “I may be a boomin' idiot but I'm not a freakin' idiot!”
Calvin told me later, “I could tell I was threading on thin water so I quickly changed the subject. I offered the security captain part of my snack pack. 'Would you care for some sugar-free raisins?' I asked him. The captain took some and smiled. I told him, 'Look, I'm leaving in about five minutes — I gotta head myself up!'”
The flight to Nairobi was uneventful and within a couple of hours Calvin and his “Wild One” partner, Bob the Hunter, were heading into the jungle. Calvin drove into a stretch of muddy land and began spinning the tires like crazy. “Bob, the wheels are spinning, but I think I'm getting lucky!” They were soon hopelessly bogged down in the mud and the Hunter said, “Calvin, can't you drive this thing?”
Calvin responded, “Whattaya expect from a one-eyed bandit?”
“Look,” Bob said, “this is your thirty-seventh trip to Africa and you still don't know how to drive through these muddy flats! It's all your fault!”
Calvin was insulted, “Hey, you're skating on thin water there, Bob, besides I don't have a guilty body in my bones.”
At that point Bob began to cough and Calvin said, “Hey, Bob, want me to do the Hind-Lick maneuver on you?” Bob told Calvin to get his elephant gun ready because he heard a rogue elephant nearby. Calvin said, “I hope so, I want to get home early, we're having a cooked roast turkey for supper tonight.”
Suddenly a huge elephant roared into the clearing, knocked the jeep on its side, spilling Bob and Calvin into the mud. “Boy,” Calvin said, “when shit happens, it happens deep!”
The next day Calvin was using a crutch under his left arm to help him walk. Bob came over to see how he was doing and began laughing as soon as he saw him. Calvin was peeved. “Bob, that's terrible. God will get you for that! That's just like throwing dirt on top of the pain!” But a little pain never stopped our hero. “Call me Moses,” Calvin said, “Wounded Moses, that's me! Look, I got my shaft! I'll throw it to the ground and it'll probably turn into a crippled snake!”
Bob was ready to leave for the States, but Calvin told him to wait a minute while he went to the doctor to get his Band-Aid changed. “Please hand me my crotch,” Calvin said. Bob laughed and said, “You mean 'crutch,' don't you?”
“Crush, crotch — what's the difference? That's how it's pronounced to me! Bob, I'm warning you — I'm gonna put a big black bird on your desk in memorative of you!”
They stopped by the Nairobi Tavern for a cool one and the waitress came over to take their order. Calvin whooped, “Oh Baby, Oh Baby, you spark my flame!” As Calvin would say, the waitress played it to the “T” and gave him a big kiss. “You're the famous Rogue Elephant killer, aren't you?” she asked. “Haven't you ever been injured?”
“Oh Baby, I got a scar from my belly button to my ding-dong,” Calvin said, “I guess I'm just an ass coming and going!” Just then the movie on the bar's TV caught Calvin's eye and he shouted, “Look! That's Michael London! He's playing a werewolf running around howling and snorkeling!”
On his way out of the bar Calvin put money in several slot machines, “I like to make them all go rinkedy-dinkedy, Bob, by the way could you drop me off at my barber? Before going home I have to get the wingtips trimmed from my hair.” As they approached the old barber shop with the red and white stripped pole outside, Calvin was reminded of his teens when he went to a barbershop similar to this one.
“Bob,” he said, “ain't it great?”
“What's great, Cal?”
“Memories, Bob, the lifetime of my heart!”
And one trip with Calvin is worth a lifetime of memories . . .
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