ALL THE NEWS THAT'S FIT TO PRINT
AND SOME THAT AIN'T
Howdy folks! This here's ol' Pete and Rosebud comin' at you again!
Well, my mule Rosebud's got a birthday comin' up this week. Yep, she's turnin' 28 on Saturday, the 28th day of May. Ain't that somethin'? How many times does that happen, somebody turns the same age as the day of the month their birthday falls on? Not very often I bet.
Rosebud's gettin' on up there in mule years. Mule years ain't the same as human bean years, you know. You ain't too old when you're 28 if you're a human bean, but you can just about double that if you're a mule. How old would that make her in mule years? Fifty somethin'? I ain't no good at figgerin' 'rithmetic problems. Rosebud is, but I don't think it'd go over too good if I was to ask her that one. And there's one thing about her, she don't mind lettin' you know when she don't like somethin' you say. No, not even a little bit. And she's already mad at me. She thinks I've forgot her birthday. But, anyways, I don't have to ask her this one. I know she'd be fifty-somethin' in human years. I can figger it that close.
It's my fault that she's upset at me. I ain't been payin' no 'tention to her hints. But I've been doin' it on purpose. I knowed she'd be aggravated, but me and Denver decided we'd throw her one of them s'prise birthday parties like you hear about. I don't know much about parties, but as I understand it, that's where the one that's gettin' the party don't know nothin' about it 'til they walk in and everbody stands up and hollers "S'prise!" That's why they call it that, I guess, 'cause it's a s'prise to 'em. So I've been actin' like I don't remember nothin' about Saturday bein' her birthday. You know, so she won't be expectin' no party or nothin'.
I ort to get one of them Oscar things if I manage to pull this off. It's hard actin' like I've forgot about it with her droppin' hints ever day. I don't know if you know anything about mules, but Rosebud don't know what the word "hint" means. Her idea of a hint is to put a sign up on the side of the road. And I ain't kiddin' about that. One time she got a big piece of pasteboard, wrote "Remember May 28" in big red letters on it, nailed it to a stick and stuck it up out there on the road in front of the house. That's her idea of a hint.
Part of that's my fault I guess. I hate to say it, but sometimes hints go right over my head. You can't just walk by and mention that somebody's got a birthday. I mean, somebody's got a birthday ever day. And for all I know, you might be talkin' about somebody in Minnetonka or one of them other northern states like that. It might not even register that you're talkin' about yourself. And Rosebud knows that so she makes shore I know it's her birthday she's talkin' about.
Usually it ain't no trouble playin' dumb, me bein' the way I am. So far, I've managed to pull it off this time too, but there's always a price to be paid for it. Last week she started losin' patience and got real cranky. Then a day or two ago she started gettin' a little panicky. I could see it in her eyes. "What if I ain't gettin' through to him?" she was thinkin'. It was about then that she started leavin' little notes around where I'd find 'em. And, like the sign on the road, she wasn't leavin' nothin' to chance. No, she was layin' it out crystal clear. "Don't forget my birthday," they'd say. All of 'em said it a little different, but that was the message. And she left 'em everwheresin the livin' room, on the kitchen table, on the rockin' chair on the front porch, everwhere she cud think of. She even rolled one up and stuck it in the spout of the coffee pot. The only way I could miss 'em is to just not be here. Like I said, I'm gen'ly purty good at actin' dumb, it's a talent I've got, but I'm havin' trouble actin' this dumb.
But my good actin' will pay off in the end. By the time Saturday mornin' rolls around, she'll be so mad she won't even look at me. And early in the mornin', I'll get her up and we'll take off down to Denver's. She'll be draggin' along a few yards behind, mutterin' about bein' stuck with a human that's dumber'n a fence post and feelin' sorry for herself. And she'll be mad at Denver too. I mean, he ort to of remembered and reminded me. So she'll get even more worked up before we get there. But when we come in sight of his house, she'll see all the balloons Denver's hung up. Well, he ain't hung 'em up yet, but he'll have 'em up by then. At first she'll see 'em and wonder what's goin' on, but then she'll figger it out. She'll know she's been surprise partied. And everthing will be alright.
Me and Denver will sing happy birthday to her and we'll light up the birthday candles and let her blow 'em out. Then we'll eat birthday cake, drink sody pop and let her open her presents. Denver's got 'em all at his house 'cause she'd find 'em if I hid 'em up here. And I think she'll have a good time at her s'prise party, even if she is a senior citizen now.
I got her a magazine prescription from that AARP outfit. She likes to read them magazines so I figger she'll like that. Don't you think?
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