It was lunchtime at the sale barn on the edge of town and the guys were milling around. They didn’t really want to eat there, as the regular cook had a family emergency in the next state, so it was a substitute named Leroy and the guys knew that everything Leroy cooked tasted like toast.

So they milled around, kicking dirt clods, inspecting the livestock coming up for the afternoon bidding, and pretending they were maybe someday going to buy something. Their dogs were there, of course: Steve’s two cowdogs, Doc’s Egyptian shepherd, Ramses (he makes pyramids in the backyard), and Billy, the official town dog.

“Steve, what’s the name of that guy who used to walk around in the bleachers yelling ‘Ho!’ every time someone wanted to bid?”

“Oh,” said Steve. “You mean that really good-looking kid?”
“Yes,” said Doc. “Haven’t seen him around for maybe a month now.”

“Quit,” said Steve. “He decided he was too stupid to work here.”

“You’re kidding.”
“Nope. One day he was clowning around and twisted a mule’s tail.”

Steve grinned.
“Ain’t as pretty as he used to be, but he’s a bunch smarter.”

Home Country features the best country and cowboy music of yesteryear.

Slim Randles
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Slim Randles

Six years ago he began writing a syndicated humor column for newspapers called “Home Country.” He’s also the author of 16 books, including three novels and the biography of The Rounders author, Max Evans. One of Slim’s most recent books, “A Cowboy’s Guide to Growing Up Right” has won two state awards and one national award. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer