small brush shouldn't fuck with big timber

Death's Door, the view from the Spanish announcers table: <strong>spreadin the word</strong>

Wednesday, January 26

spreadin the word


This is a step-off from what I usually write about, but after reading a post on Nightmare’s site, my head got to wondering and my Grandfather came to mind. He always dug me for what I was all about and I think he’d dig the blogsite and what I’m doing here.

Papaw, that’s what we all called em, was a Baptist Preacher all his adult life. He wasn’t your fire and brimstone type of preacher, but he sure enough got old school about it. He came from the Lone Star state by way of Louisiana. He preached all over West Texas in his day and was well received and respected. Back then he preached on what was called the circuit. He’d hit a different town every Sunday or so, cause back in the day a lot of the smaller towns didn’t have a regular everyday man of the cloth so they had to rely on the circuit preacher to make do. He’d hit town, save the sinners plus smite a few heathens and spread the word of God, then in the evenings the old churchwomen would cook him Sunday dinner and do his laundry and shit.

Odd thing, in that part of the world lunch was called dinner and dinner was called supper and the trunk of a car was called the turtle. A few years ago I was doing a job for the Man in the Missouri Boothill country and I walked into this roadside store to grab a pack of smokes. The old man behind the counter kept staring at the federal ID that hung around my neck. “Beck, huh? I used to travel with a preacher named Beck years ago in West Texas”. We got to talking and he told me he used to be a circuit judge years ago, and every so often he’d hook up and travel with a black preacher named Beck. Talk about your small world. How cool was that?

As well as I can remember Papaw moved to the big city in the early seventies and lived here until he passed some years ago. It’s funny; when he died and we had his funeral I didn’t cry much. I was gonna miss him somethin powerful, but I don’t remember feeling overly sad over his passing. I think because in my heart I believed it was his choice and I was good with that. In the last years before he passed, he suffered from Alzheimer’s in a bad way. He’d be inclined to relive his life from years past, or forget who family and friends were. And as he got older the moments of lucidness were far and in between, but one day the family was enjoying one of the holidays at his house when he called me into the bedroom where he was resting.

He told me in a clear lucid voice that he was tired and going home. I looked at him; what home are you talking about Papaw? He just looked at me, smiled and said, HIS home. I walked back into the living room where the rest of the family was waiting. I told them what he said and that was that. Within a year or so he was gone. I think one of the best things I’ve ever done in my life had to do with him. Sometime before the Alzheimer’s took hold he took to missing his old stomping grounds back in Texas. The family hatched a plan where he could revisit all the places where he used to preach. Think of it as Papaw’s preacher reunion tour, and yours truly was picked to be the tour bus driver.

Here’s the picture, Papaw, my grandmother, and my mother plus myself stuffed into a reconditioned, souped up, full blown ex highway patrol car. That was all me and my father drove back then, sorry. Papaw was so pumped for this trip; we’d blow into West Texas like the mob and hit all these small towns and I’d drop them at whatever church he was visiting. He would always say; well, grandson, I’m gonna go see to my brethren. What about you? My mother always hated this but he dug it.

I’d say; well, we passed my brethren a few miles back. You remember that sign I showed you that said “Cold Cocktails & Nude Dancers”? I’m gonna go up in there and do my damndest to spread my faith around a bit. He would then check to make sure nobody was watching and slide me a five spot and tell me it was for the offering plate. At first I don’t think that he knew that a couple of times I wasn’t kidding, but he was more then hip to my shit. The road trip lasted only a few days but he really enjoyed it. He got to see old friends and places, plus spread the Word one more time. I got to do a good deed that I think I’ll never surpass.


"and the monkey flipped the switch"

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

cool. very very cool.
so says the sister

3:48 PM  
Blogger your brother said...

Ditto..

4:36 PM  
Blogger Nightmare said...

FucknA Brother!! That was Awesome!

I sometimes feel I was born in the wrong decade, and I should have been around during the 30's/40's.

Do you think people will talk about us like this when we are up and gone? I don't know who on my side since I'm one of the few non-procreators around. But who knows.

9:18 PM  
Blogger sex scenes at starbucks said...

wow. you were lucky to have him in your life, and he was obviously lucky to have you too! what a great remembrance, D.

9:23 PM  
Blogger me said...

That's so neat Greg. I used to call mine Papaw too! Meme and papaw were my grandparents, and I have many fond memories of them as well. They knew so many people all around the world that I still meet people that knew them. My papaw used to own many things, one was a bird business where he raised and sold pheasants, etc. Well when Baby Ruth was around, he would buy from my papaw. He had so many other stories of people he knew and what I always thought was so cool is that they were not the sort of people to spread it around and "name drop". They were just friends to everyone, and famous or not, they were their friend. So cool the way things were back then, so simple and not the complicated stuff we have now.

9:42 PM  

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