About a year after we had moved from the ranch in Texas we were living in a nice place just 10 miles south of Cheyenne, Oklahoma. We had a big ‘ol Chow dog named “Buddy”. He wasn’t much count for anything except for barking non-stop if he heard or saw anything during the night. It had become pretty common for the possums to come up during the night and try to steal some of his dog food. He killed a couple of them and I imagine a couple dozen or more got some of his food and made their escape. That happened at least once a week. The big house we lived in had a nice, wrap-around porch all across the front and around one side. On the front porch we had a long church pew; it was about a 12 footer. His favorite thing was to get one of those possums hemmed up and bark at them until the fight happened or they, by chance, got away.
It was the middle of the summer and the yearly rodeo was going on in Cheyenne so we thought we ought to take in a night of it. We got home about 11 pm and got the kids put down and were just about to ‘hit the sack’ when ‘ol Buddy went to barking. It doesn’t take much of that to start wearing on my patience, you understand. I’m barefooted and in my underwear, (tighty-whiteys in those days…..I have since upgraded!). I grabbed a broom on the way out the door and it was just as I thought. He had him a possum down the porch at the end of the long church pew. Now, nobody likes possums; I guess they’re harmless but they’re just nasty if you ask me. My plan was to spook him off the porch with the broom and then let nature take it’s course.
I’m ticked off and yelling at ‘ol Buddy, who’s still barking furiously, as I neared the end of the church pew. Well…..when I got to the end of the pew and reared back to smack the varmint with my broom…..I finally got a good look at the possum. But, it wasn’t a possum!
Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a BADGER at point-blank range with all his teeth showing (it looked like a few dozen of ’em), slobberin’, hissin’….and ready to attack……with nothing but your underwear on or not! It was a first for me!! My whole life flashed in front of me! Instantaneously I had a vision of me being ripped to shreds by this maniac of an animal! He was On. The. Hook.!! I mean….have you ever heard a ‘good’ story about a badger?? Right! That’s ’cause there ain’t no good stories about ’em!! Every outrageous, horrifying thing I’d ever heard before about badgers somehow, at that moment, seemed really legit!
I bet you could still see my toe prints in the concrete on that porch where I skidded to a stop! In my mind I said, “If you’ll just give me one tenth of a second….I’ll be out of your life forever!” Well, fate happened to be on my side that night….thank the Lord! I have no idea what happened to the badger; don’t even care! I was just glad to get out of there with my life!
That was the last time I ever rambled down the porch with a broom! (I’m a quick learner!) And, just between you and me, I can’t remember if I ever wore those underwear again or not!