Friday, August 12, 2011

Congress Man

Here's another story from my good friend who's in touch with a band of Bigfoot. (See previous blog entry called A Note from Uncle Hairy.) Some have asked if these are by me, but no, they're honestly not. Maybe some day my friend will let me give out his name, but for now, he wants to remain anon. I think he's afraid of being inundated by Bigfoot researchers, even though he is one.

Hey Rusty,

The other day I was out scouting around here in the boonies and got turned around a bit and was late getting in to my truck. It was getting dark, and just when I got to the outskirts of my camp I spotted a black bear sitting on his haunches sniffing the air down below. No doubt he was thinking I was in camp and was conniving a thieving move. So I snuck up behind him and kicked him in the rump and he leaped up and bucked off for the hills, not even bothering to turn around to see what I was!
That incident reminded me of my first ever meeting with a Bigfoot. It happened up north, nearer to the border than I really should've been. I had been scouting all day and had gotten a ways too far from the camp and so attempted an ill-fated shortcut which led to a couple of circle walks, some thornberry patches, and deep river crossings. I was tired, wet, and hungry.
Anyway, I finally sorted my bearings and upon reaching my truck was fully engaged with the pleasant thought of what to make for dinner. Imagine my surprise to see a roaring fire and a pot of coffee brewing in my camp and someone wearing a Bigfoot suit sitting casually on the lowered tailgate of my truck.  
I stopped stone cold and just stood there, unable to gulp.
The Bigfoot had his hairy chin resting on one knee in a thoughtful pose, and I swear in the right angle of light if you'd put a ball cap on him he'd look all the world like a Game Warden officer making a casual routine check before calling it a day.  
"You should've taken that left fork at the ridge crossing up there," he said with gruffy discernment. "Woulda saved you at least two hours."
Trying to be cool and casual, I answered, "Well shoots, why didn't you say something back there then?"
"Couldn't.  I was sitting here at the time."
That's when I knew I was done for. This was a real Bigfoot. Those guys have legendary hearing, plus they have all kinds of informants, and that trail fork was a good 9 miles back. I forgot all about supper plans, I was gonna die tonight, hungry.
Suddenly a log snapped in the fire, and as if on cue the coffee started percolating. Bigfoot bounded off the tailgate, spun around and slammed it shut and then brushed abruptly past me towards the fire with his head down in an on-a-mission look.
My shoulders and neck muscles tensed up and instinctively I felt for my cell phone, then realized it was no good back in these parts. Who was I gonna call anyway, "Neighborhood Bigfoot Watch?"   

I gathered my wits and took a long deep breath. I was tired. I was hungry. I was hallucinating. I did not just see a Bigfoot slam my tailgate shut. There is no fire either. But why do I smell coffee? Coffee doesn't lie, ever.
In a robotic graceful kind of way, I managed to get my body turned to see what the real scene was behind me. I rubbed my eyes and blinked and, yep, I saw a fire, and yep, sure enough there was a Bigfoot pouring a hot cup of coffee. The massive, hairy creature then carefully set the pot on a rock and walked over and handed the cup to me with all the grace of a bistro waiter. 
Gee, my first ever Bigfoot Brew! What a way to die, I thought.
This was one weird evening: Me, fire, coffee, and Bigfoot.
I looked down into the steaming cup and noticed a bit of bark or moss or something had fallen from his chin whiskers into the cup and was floating around, but I sure didn't say nothing. It's important to keep one's table manners, even when facing a sure death.
"T-t-thanks," I stammered. He grunted and went over and squatted down on a log next to the fire. 
"Wup, so...what brings you out here in these parts, B-B-Bigfoot?" I somehow managed to gaggle while raising the cup in a shaky salute. I swished the cup around a bit, hoping to get that floating tidbit to fly out.
He stared into the fire. "I got something to share. Been a long time since I talked to a human, so I gotta find the words. Have a seat."
I stood there, swishing that coffee cup around, still trying to get that little particle out of my coffee. "Have a seat!" he then bellowed with impatience and gestured nowhere in particular.
I jumped and spilled some of the coffee, burning my hand in the process. The good thing was that mysterious grub particle flew out.  At least I would die drinking a clean cup of coffee. Hey, things were looking up already. 
With that comforting thought I dragged out a camp chair and set it up near him and s-s-slowly eased down into it. I sipped a little brew and looked into the fire, trying really hard not to look at those big hairy feet. I'm no shoe expert, but they was easily a size 33 in my rough guesstimation.
Then he cleared his throat and told me a most remarkable tale. Here is his complete transcript with my notes included for clarity:
[Begin transcript]
My clan lives among the many high peaks region [ed note: Adirondack Mountains]. Although there are a fair number of us, we have always avoided the two legs [humans] as they are quite unpredictable and dangerous. [Quick glance toward me].  
[I sat harmlessly and said nothing, absorbed by the comfort of my last cup of coffee. Satisfied that I was not, at the moment, unpredictable or dangerous, the Bigfoot continued on.]
One morning I was out gathering berries with others when we heard a strange wimpering. I motioned to the others to stay put and went over the ridge and down into the next valley and immediately found the source of the cry. A young Two Leg was alone, running about in no direction and very frightened.  
I circled the area and there were no other Two Legs about, however I did find a broken water shell [boat] and small Two Leg tracks from the boat, so that is how he got there. 
So I go back and again watched the little human for a long while. Suddenly I notice that a silent Long Tail [mountain lion] was also watching this human from a high ledge. The human would be a good dinner for the Long Tail, so that would end the noise and be fine for me. Satisfied, I left and returned to my group and told them, and we all went about our evening.
The next morning, however, I was awakened by a bad noise, so awful that I knew it could only be a human. I followed the sounds and saw a new thing that amazed me.  
The human was talking to the Long Tail.  Each time the Long Tail crept in closer for his food kill, the human would talk more and louder, and the Long Tail would then move back, sit down and yawn.  
I watched this awhile and then stood to stretch and accidently knocked a large rock that rolled down the hill. Busted - both the human and the Long Tail saw me!  
The Long Tail quickly ran away, as they do not like us. But the human ran right up to me and began to talk. I had no choice but to politely sit and listen. He talked. And he talked, then he talked some more.
Finally, I decided I must go home. I motioned for the little human to follow, and the sounds he made had a pattern to them that I found interesting, so I thought it would be good for the clan to study him awhile.
Well, the human stayed with us a long while. Many of us began to learn the talk from him. At first it was fun, something new. We learned words, then phrases, then endless sentences.  
But soon it became a problem, actually many problems.  
The human would never stop talking. Even when eating, he talked. That became bothersome.
Also, the human would often say one thing but then do another. He would explain the great benefit of eating dirt, so well told that many tried it and for awhile believed it. Then they noticed the human was eating their share of juicy berries, while they were enjoying the new benefit of eating dirt.    
And he was very good at talking to make things change for him. I would tell him it was his turn to bring water but he would get someone else to do it, by telling him somehow the great reward for doing so. Pulling water had never been fun or rewarding before, but his words said the opposite was really true.
But the worse thing was, the clan stopped doing things. Less and less they gathered food or trekked over to visit other Bigfoot clans. Instead, they sat around and talked.  
Talk, talk, talk.  
One day, I had enough. I forbade any more talking. Everyone stopped but the human, of course. When none of us Bigfoot engaged in the talk, the human began to talk to the camp fire, the trees, the rocks, the animals. At times he even talked to the air.
Soon the leaves began to wither. The rocks crumbled. Animals disappeared. Even the fire would not stay lit or put out much heat.  And the air, I think it became thin.
So finally I picked up the human and carried him down the river toward the human dead tree piles [houses]. Of course he talked the whole way, but I did not hear him because I had packed mud in my ears. I took him down to where the Green Hats [forest rangers] lived and set him on the porch and knocked on the door and left quickly.  
When I got to the forest edge I looked back one more time and the little human was talking to a barking Stick Bringer [dog]. For a moment, he curiously cocked his head, then he lay his head on the ground and covered his eyes with his paws.
After that, we all returned to our ways, and it was such a relief. The animals returned, the trees bloomed, and the air was full and the fire was hot. We have learned our lesson, that the Two Legs are not just dangerous, they are also noisy.  
Years later, I was snooping around a Green Hat's home one evening and heard a familiar old noise from inside. I slipped up to the window and peered in and, to my great chagrin, I saw the same human, much older now.  
Actually the human was in a box. He was surrounded by other humans and they were all smiling and clapping at his words and waving little flags on sticks. Someone in the box called him Congress Man.
I quickly ducked away from the window and crawled off, fearing Congress Man would see me and come out of the box and follow me back to my clan and make things all bad for us again.
I am the only Bigfoot that can remember the human way to talk. It is such a burden to have to talk, and thank you for listening so I can get rid of the words. I feel better now. Just don't tell Congress Man you saw me here. I will meet you again later and get rid of more words.  
[End transcript]
With that, Bigfoot stood and took my empty cup, walked over to the warm pot and refilled it and brought it back to me.  
Then, without a word he slipped out into the darkness, leaving me with a steaming cup of Bigfoot Brew.  
I took a sip of my Bigfoot Brew, leaned back, and listened to the wild sounds of the night, happy that the air was no longer filled with human words.  

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