A Trip Through the Back Country

From Joe Thompson on alt.callahans. This is a new variant on an old pun about a certain compass company.

Well, in the country you get to know an area pretty well after you live there a while. Newcomers always buy maps but you don’t really need a map after a couple of years, just an idea of a couple of main roads and a good sense of direction.

Even among the old-timers there’s always the one who’s the old-timer, who speaks seldom, but always with finality. In the particular town we’re concerned with, his name was Heehoo. And, he was known for several counties as the man who always knew where he was. He didn’t understand how anybody could get so far into the sticks they didn’t know where they were. It wasn’t that he could take a sun angle or judge the time by the stars… it was just that inner compass some country boys have.

Well one day he sent a young fella, his cousin Myron Tates’ son Hezekiah, down the road a piece to his house to fetch back a pig he’d just sold the butcher. He rattled off a string of directions, but the Tates boy was one of these “Generation X” folk, had a whole load of fancy gadgets, and he was too busy figurin’ the directions to be payin’ attention to what they were. Well after a minute he grinned and said, “You watch Heehoo. When I get back I’ll show you how to get from here to your house in half the time.” Heehoo just snorted and waved him on.

Well what young Hezekiah hadn’t accounted for was all the fancy maps in his whizbang gadgets were fifty years out of date. And as he got further along what was marked as a logging road, the less road and the more log there tended to be. Finally he got to a point where he thought he could make out the road, then he wasn’t sure, and about five minutes after that he quit kidding himself. Fortunately his cellular phone still worked out here, so he called the general store Heehoo was chewing the fat in front of. And, as you might expect, the proprietor lost no time in passing on the news:

“Heehoo! Hezzie Tates is lost!”

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