Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

From Fly Creek

November 29, 2012

Giving gnomes a home


Good old boys in Catahoula Parish developed the dogs to run in packs of three and pull down wild boar. Two are to clamp onto the back hocks, and the other onto the snout. 

Probably the dogs draw straws for position, with the unlucky one drawing facing up to snout and six-inch tusks. The three of them try to wrestle the boar till the hunters catch up. 

Our Catahoula dog, rescued by a local shelter, has other, mellower breeds mixed in him. He does get frenzied, though, when a Harley roars along our frontage. A hog, you see.

Blue was educated up and through Advanced Agility Training. He’s also a certified Therapy Dog, though a retired one now. He’s largely spending his golden years under the kitchen table, sleeping paw in paw with Simon the cat.

He doesn’t need his doghouse any more, and so Anne and I decided to put it into our part of the hamlet’s community yard sale. Most of our stuff was laid out in our double garage, but I dragged the doghouse halfway down the drive to display it. And that’s how Blue get mixed into gnomic culture, such as it is.

Blue’s never known gnomes personally. His closest encounter came on a long walk last year, when I had to yank him away from offering a neighbor’s gnome a three-legged salute. But now his departed doghouse will enmesh Blue right into the gnome tradition. 

Towards the end of our yard sale, after we’d unloaded endless stuff that likely will be sold at the buyers’ next yard sales, the doghouse still stood by the driveway. But then up its slope came a stooped couple, holding hands and smiling gently. They could have been Gram and Gramps, stepped out through the frame of a Norman Rockwell painting.

Text Only
From Fly Creek
  • From word to phrase to sentence As usual, Dennis Savoie started it. Old friends, we long ago discovered our mutual interest in oddities of words and language usage. His most recent challenge to me: Is our flag properly called "spangled" with stars?

    July 24, 2014

  • 'They were out of step but Jim!' All right, skip the drolleries about the headline. The quote is actually the title of a 1918 song by Irving Berlin, who, with George M. Cohan and other songsmiths, was producing patriotic pieces by the dozen as the Yanks were going "Over There!"

    June 19, 2014

  • Replanting has taken root Lots of boxes still to be unpacked and stuff to be put on shelves and into closets, but Anne's and my shift into Cooperstown is almost done. We're securely replanted at 24 Delaware Street and already feeling at home.

    May 8, 2014

  • There's reason to hope I hadn't planned this piece for my April column, but something happened that was impossible to ignore. Within a week, three different friends (count them, three!) from different parts of the country emailed to say they'd come across an old Crier column that they'd saved for twelve years and had sent to many friends because it meant much to them.

    April 17, 2014

  • Let not thy left hand know That headline's a Bible allusion, trenchant advice not to preen when doing good: "But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth." Amen, I say.

    March 6, 2014

  • How good to be back! "Tis I, the Spirit of a Thousand Columns Past, back after a twelve-month silence to talk at you again in the flesh!"

    January 2, 2014

  • Mammon Triumphs in Turkey Bowl Editor's Note: We're thrilled to announce the return of our columnist, Jim Atwell, and his legendary column "From Fly Creek." Jim's column will be an occasional feature, when he is able to write or he has something he wants to contribute. We celebrate his return with one of his classic columns.

    December 5, 2013

  • Rolling toward a stop I’m slowing down, friends, rolling toward a stop for this column. The best way to describe my reason is through an analogy: I want you to think of me as a horse-drawn wagon and driver â€" not just as the driver, but as the whole shebang.

    December 27, 2012

  • Giving gnomes a home Whack a mole, if you must, but never a gnome. You'd enrage those who dote on them. And there are many such people, though maybe not as many as gnomes. Gnomes are everywhere.

    November 29, 2012

  • Hauling history home Anne and I have a trip ahead of us. We'll be trundling south in our bought-used-but-still-great Mercury Mountaineer SUV.

    November 15, 2012