A Story of Utter StupidityNovember 22, 2009
This is a story of utter stupidity. But first, the star of the show.
As you can see, this little thing barely had spikes, not even worth the $85 processing fee.
So what makes this little guy worth over $400? Or the price of some rifles, a pickup truck, and bail money?
Scott knew better. But he was with G-, in G-'s truck, sitting by the side of the road. Yes, they were going to shoot on land they had permission to hunt on, an old friend of G-'s. However, where they parked by the side of the road, which has been promoted from 'farm road' status to 'county' status since the 9-1-1 road mapping updates, oh, around ten years ago, was also very near someone's house, who happens to own land right across the road. A very narrow road, tinier than ours. So you can imagine how close that would be.
Backstory. These people who own the house are C-s. C-s permeate the county. These particular C-s ~really~ loathe old man G-. They are very tired of him poaching on their land, and have repeatedly called in complaints to the conservation service, to no avail. They reached a point where they contacted old man R- and gave him a heads up, saying that if G- came near their property again, they'd be calling immediately. So before G- and Scott ever drove out that way, G- *knew* this. But he didn't tell Scott. I happened to find out later by pretending to go over for a pot to put beans in and he just couldn't stand letting an audience go by without spilling his guts.
So while they're out there looking very illegal sitting in a pickup by the side of the road, G- told Scott that whatever he shoots at, if anyone asks later, he was standing by some stumps "over there". Just in case.
So they come rolling in, Scott brings me a heart and liver, calls in his tag number, then we went outside and noticed a game warden in G-'s driveway. The deer was still over there in G-'s truck, thankfully tagged correctly, but Scott headed over, had a bad feeling about it.
G- told the game warden that they weren't anywhere near the truck when Scott shot the deer, that in fact, they had split up, Scott was out of sight, and G- was just coming back from shooting at a couple of deer and missing, and was out of bullets. Scott obviously wouldn't corroborate the story since they were really both standing together near the truck when they both spotted the deer, Scott said he didn't think his rifle would shoot that far, and G- handed him his rifle. Scott shot the deer, went to gut it, and G- swears he helped Scott drag it back (but he never saw him gut it, for some odd reason...). Fortunately, telling the truth won out.
The game warden came this close to stripping them of their rifles and vehicles, and could have even taken them to jail. They practically had witnesses, being in eyeball range of a house with people inside who called on them. However, he didn't even take the deer, since Scott obviously had tagged and gutted it correctly and had already called it in. The game warden had seen far worse cases of poaching, and Scott's name had never come up before. But, yes, you guessed it, because it was Scott's deer tag and because he shot the rifle, he got slapped with a big, fat fine for shooting from the road.
The warden told G- straight to his face he was lying, and G- shrugged it off and kept yapping like it was all part of the game. I heard it all from our back deck, whispering under my breath for G- to just *shut* *up*. Scott finally just walked off and left with him still flapping his lips to the game warden. But basically, the warden told G- that he'd had a LOT of calls on him, and I got the very strong feeling that this was his last warning, since everyone around here knows he's been poaching for years, and how can you not know when he goes around bragging about it.
So I'm sitting there waiting to get that pot for the beans, listening to G's after-version convoluted into 4 completely different story streams all at once. G- was telling me not in so many words that it was all Scott's fault that he didn't lie right like he was told, but G-'s friends (old man R- and another guy he just calls a hillbilly) are going to go locate the deer guts and prove to the C-s that the deer was shot on R-'s land and then create a big stink about the C-s can't hunt deer on HIS land, yeah, I know, hillbilly soap opera, like the Hatfields and McCoys. Anyway, how dumb is that, proving a lie is the truth or something. But also along with those stories were some big concoction about how it all ~really~ went down but you could tell it was all a big lie being woven after the fact to spread around so G- wouldn't be the bad guy, and somewhere through all that came trickling the truth, like how G- knew they'd be called on and still deliberately went back to that very spot in full view of that house and used Scott to get his deer without actually shooting it himself. Stupid man won't show any remorse at all that Scott got stuck with this big fine, won't take any responsibility for the law showing up (blame those hated C-s, HE'LL get even with THEM!), and is so steeped in getting the storytelling set up that he's completely missing what he actually did to Scott. It's not ~just~ the money, it's not ~just~ the setup. He's dragged Scott's name into it now. Scott's forever on record now as being fined for hunting illegally, his name will be known in the C- household for years to come as being associated with the hated old man G- (which means Scott is a dirty poacher, too), and frankly, how can he ever trust G- again. G- played him, acted all innocent, used him in this weird conflicting neighbor triangle, and is passing the blame like crazy.
Scott has reacted to it slowly. I think it's like a shock for him to realize that he got a big punch in the stomach. I caught it all right away, understood the portent and deeper relationship scars that'll come with this, but even with the fine, it took Scott all day long to finally just say that G- was making a bigger deal of this than it needed to be. They have no idea over there now NICE Scott is. He drops everything he's doing in his own life to take care of their needs, is always over there being supportive and helpful, and this is what he gets. What's really sad is that he's already laughed about it to *- and *- on the phone like it's a funny joke, he got fined for illegally hunting from the road. HE is taking responsibility for shooting that deer the wrong way. He's not sitting back spewing at G-, the way G- is spewing up lies and dragging his friends and their neighbors into it.
(Insert note- G is a veteran and has made it through a LOT of stuff, including alcoholism in his earlier years and losing part of a lung to cancer over Christmas one year, which was excruciatingly painful. Please understand this story has loads of complex undertones and that we love G-. This next part is part of the story that was written 7 years ago. Remember, I'm married into this.)
Scott is gullible. He's smart and knew better, but trusting and really thought he was helping his old frail step-dad get a deer this year. Might take a few days, months, maybe even a year or two, but one of these days he's gonna have some really bitter feelings come out about this one. It was so obvious to me that he walked right into a very unloving abusive situation. I mean, what family does that to its own??? He got played. No apology for it. Makes you wonder what it was like growing up with this step-father, going pheasant hunting with him, putting up with his drunken mouth. At the end of ALL this, I found out that G- actually has a deer permit this year... So it's his pickup, his chosen location, his rifle... but he wants Scott to do the deed and use his own tag. After years of actual poaching, this looked like a big production of proving he's NOT a poacher, and dang if he still doesn't have a legal chance to shoot another deer. My mouth fell open. You put YOUR tag on? And HE still gets to hunt some more while you pay this big whoppin' fine???
Speaking of putting up with his mouth. *- showed up at G-'s house Friday night to go hunting around here Saturday. G- told him he could NOT hunt on Scott's land, and said other things that got him so upset that he left actually crying (Gram is really pissed about that one) and wouldn't come back to hunt at all, and *- found out and won't come back to the house. We found out about it, Scott told Gram he was fine with *- hunting over here, and that he'd even go with him. But, too late, G- had already ruined it. So, Scott goes out hunting with G- the very next day... You kinda get the feeling part of G-'s setup today might have had something to do with Scott being nice to *- after G- drove him off? Funny how that all kinda ran together there. Funny how G- manages to ruin lives all around him like that, even when he's pretending to be nice or needy.
I've been watching this family implode for awhile now. Now I'm watching G- get mean, vindictive. Scott and I have already figured out over the summer that he's very angry that Gram has tied up and spent ALL his money on grandkids that aren't even related to him, and he has nothing left to will to his own grown children and his real grandchildren from a previous marriage. He's been angry for a long time about the way Gram fusses over the boys. I can't help but feel he's getting angry that she's leaning on Scott more than ever now while he pouts and refuses to help her with anything. He's been awfully arrogant since he got over being so puny last winter. You'd think someone that old and probably that close to death would be a little more cautious, but he's into the 'once save always saved' thing. He can be as big a jerk as he wants, he's ~saved~.
After all I've been through with my own stuff, and watching my sister go through losing her in-laws, I'm having a hard time watching this incessant stupidity in the G- clan. They still haven't figured out how to love each other, most of them don't even seem to care any more, and all I see is this depressing grinding emotional pain and head games. If I felt relief at my own mother finally dying (and for good reason), how much more relief will I feel when my in-laws start dying? It's an enticing thought. I don't mean to be horrible, and I can see Scott being dragged through all kinds of crappy hell in the process, but really, wouldn't it be a relief if some of the meanness naturally just ~stopped~?
And after all I heard today, sounds like there are a few other people out there thinking the same thing.
(One more note- he's still with us, lolololol. I like this story, I think it's funny and it was challenging to write it out. On a personal level, I was irritated because it happened the month after my mom died, and I used some of her life insurance money to pay that fine. And who wouldn't be irritated being yelled at by their mil to choose a side because this is how people get shot around here, and I totes won saying "I'm on your son's side.", duh. I've said before that our real lives here easily beat Everybody Loves Raymond, and I stand by it. I think I have gold in sitcom material.) (But she's right, people do still get shot around here. Dangerous game G- was playing...)
This is an example of what my blogging could be like if I wrote about other people's stuff and didn't focus onto my own stuff, story after story after story. Lots and lots of stories. I'm a very typical Harriet the Spy type, and every day is more stories all around me. I used to religiously document what was going on around me and how I felt about it, and over several years, I can go back and see a very typical autism spectrum person dealing with the depression of misunderstandings galore in all directions while everyone, including me, processed through our feelings in very unhealthy ways. Thankfully, so many things hit me funny that I have laughed quite a lot through most of it, even when I was upset. For example, @bonenado racing from the shower to peer naked out a window into the dark when he heard a truck start up- guys, that was beautiful. I actually froze just staring at this wonderful human form completely innocent of his effect on me because he's so in the moment about someone moving a vehicle off the deer path... It's like watching a documentary about a cool and beautiful animal, and it's real and happening in my own house. The pose he struck stretching over stuff to peek out that window- let's just say people would pay good money to see celebrities and porn stars posed like that. Money for fake arrangements, free in my own home. This is the kind of thinking that has helped me appreciate and survive this marriage.
Also, I live next door to a very bored old veteran who loves living a soap opera. He's full of stories himself, but it's misleading to say that since he fixed radios in service and then was sent home for drinking. I struggle with veteran's day... I think a lot of us do, and it's just politically incorrect to say we need help with our severely depressed veterans when we're standing up applauding them for heroic acts that some of them never actually did. But the main thing is, the leaving home and training itself are rough, and the coming home and adapting back are rough. I spent many hours of my marriage talking to G-, swapping pumpkin pies for sunfish he caught in a friend's pond, driving him to town during a family crisis, inviting him into my home for meals and holidays. I actually like him, but it's like he's a stuck recording device. He's locked up in a past that doesn't fit our now, and it's like never the twain shall meet. So he plays games. He's a talker and he knows everyone, and his shadow over my marriage has had me dealing with things as ridiculous as strangers calling me up out of the blue accusing @bonenado of killing their dog and having to untangle all kinds of nonsense, because this guy just couldn't shut up for years, and stuff coming out of his mouth wasn't always the truth. I missed getting a particular job, rather bluntly dismissed, after finding out I was related to this family. Stuff like that.
Choose a side. I chose to stay married in this family. If that doesn't shout to the world what side I'm on, what does?