Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Button Buck

One of the great things when sitting in the stand waiting for Mr. Big to come out to visit is watching the other wildlife. Birds, rabbits, and yes, even those pesky tree rats otherwise known as squirrels can be entertaining. It makes you wonder just what is going on in the minds of these creatures when they are doing so.
We have a habit of humanizing animals based on what they do and how they act. It is an attempt to empathize with creatures that we have a hard time communicating with in an effective manner.
This often carries over into art, media and entertainment. It is how we have Disney movies such as Bambi, Dumbo, The Fox and the Hound, and The Jungle Book. In the digital information age, it is how we get all types of memes such as the various facial expressions of a Siberian husky and oodles of cat videos.
Way back in the day, there was a salesman from Mississippi who had the gift of telling a story. He used his skills to assist in increasing his sales, as his customers were always excited to see him and catch his next great story. His stories often spoke of his cousin and were always based in rural America and life there.
I learned of this salesman/comedian through the news when I grew up. Every day during the news at noon, the local channel would run the farm report. I couldn’t tell you if there is still such a thing anymore, as I cannot remember the last time I watched a full broadcast of the 12pm news. Anyway, during the farm report each day, the person reporting on the various futures and sales prices of various farm markets would finish with a short outtake from the great Jerry Clower.
One such story, slightly changed for the environment, may explain why that little yearling buck you see every day from your stand acts like it does at times.
You see, there were three deer standing on the edge of a field. One was a fit eight-pointer, the second was a smaller six-pointer, and the last one was a young button buck. They were each watching the does that were grazing in the field.
“About twenty of those fine ladies are mine, and I won’t share with anyone,” says the eight-pointer.
“Well, the other ten have an eye for me and you won’t see them go with anyone else,” says the six-pointer.
“That little one over there. She is mine. We are happy with just us,” the button buck stated matter-of-factly to the other two.
Just then, all the does stood alert watching the other side of the field. A massive buck pushed through the bushes lining the woods. His rack boasted of fourteen points, with two of them being symmetrical drop tines. His brow tines were as tall as the rest of the base of the rack and the base was as big around as a man’s wrist.
His body was sculpted and masculine. If it were not for the antlers you could mistake the body for a champion thoroughbred racehorse. His neck was muscular and chiseled. It was clear he could have any doe he wanted and beat any buck in a spar in short notice.
The eight-pointer looked at the other two and said, “well, I don’t really need that many does anyway. I would be happy with five.”
The six-pointer followed suit telling the two bucks, “you know, I could probably get by with just one.”
The button buck, upon hearing the other two, starting pawing at the ground and snorting loudly. He then ran out into the group of does prancing proudly. He pee’d everywhere marking territory and then started rubbing his small antler knobs up and down on a tiny tree.
Running and leaping, he came back to where the other two bucks were.
“What are you doing? That guy is going to tear you apart if you think you can get any of these does!” exclaimed the eight-pointer.
“I just want to make sure he knows I am a buck and not a doe,” said the button buck.


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  5. Bill this is such a great story! I am glad that I am not the only one who humanizes animals. You wrote this post in such a way I could see the deer in my mind. Thank you for sharing!

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