Sunday, March 1, 2009

Scary Larry

"There's only two things I can't weld, a broken heart and the crack of dawn!"
Scary Larry was a caretaker at the Tule Belle for about a decade. When I first met him, we pulled our buddies blind out with his truck and proceeded to kill about eight black widows with brake cleaner. He called it "Panther Piss". It worked well. The poor widders would curl up and drop from their nests. Kinda freaky on a dark night with just a pen light.
Larry was known as a poacher, "Some guys wait for the ducks to come to them. I go after em'. I hunt em down and I kill em!" Larry upheld the season and bag limits, he just liked to remain blissfully unawares of certain boundaries. Usually he'd get into the landowners good graces, hunting a neighboring club on their non-shoot days or visiting a farmers marsh when their truck just didn't happened to be parked there. He used to say, "You've heard of A-zone and B-zone? Well, this is R-zone!"
Somehow he got the keys to some P,G & E land and we hunted all late summer for a blacktail. Finally Larry came running down the mountain like a hillbilly running moonshine. "Get the truck, there's a buck up there" he hollered. I grabbed my buddies truck because he was off somewhere on Larry's dirtbike. "Drop me off here! When you hear a shot, come over the hill and pick me up!" I did as I was told. My heart started thumping in my chest when I heard the rifle crack and took off like a Duke Boy up that dirt hill. When I got to the top I noticed a fence and cattle grate but there weren't any "No Trespassing" signs so I slid around the hill and backed up to the bottom just as Larry dropped the tail gate and slid the small buck into the bed. "Get goin!" he half-yelled, half-whispered. I was concerned with his sense of urgency but I just figured this was Larry being Larry. Gettin excited about being excited and so we rolled out with a growing plume of dusk following us through the gate and back down the hill. We stopped and rendezvouzed with Kenny. He heard the shot and motored up to meet us. As we sat there contemplating the bucks inexplicably small antlers, I noticed a truck on the top of the hill facing us. "Uhhh, Larry, did you see that truck before?"
"Uh oh, we'd better high tale it boys".

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