THOSE OLD DOG DAYS OF SUMMER
Although “dog days” for 2018 technically began on July 3 and have already ended (on August 11), for me and the folks I grew up around the hot, humid days of August and early September were considered dog days. All sorts of folk wisdom (or wackiness) was associated with the period. Snakes were supposedly much more dangerous because they were shedding their skins and more easily riled than usual. There may have been some truth to this, although it likely would have been the warmth producing hyperactivity in these cold-blooded creatures rather than getting a new suit of clothes. Similarly, yellow jackets and hornets were increasingly bad, but that was because there were more of them, thanks to several months to multiply, as opposed to something in the time of year making them more of a pest. The there were packsaddles in the corn (if you’ve ever been “stung” by one you know how painful they can be), corn leaves or fodder would cut you as they dried and hardened, and that dreaded day, the start of a new school year, lay just around the corner.
Yet August brought with it plenty of delight as well. Although no red-blooded boy would have dared admit as much, most of us looked forward to the start of school. There would be new teachers to torment, new students to meet (maybe even a pretty girl or two who had moved in over the summer), old friends to see after months apart, and the general excitement associated with being a grade higher and, at least in your own mind, a bit more important.
Beyond that though, and what I remember most fondly about Augusts of my youth, there was so much excitement crammed into a few short weeks. There was anticipation of another hunting season not far off. There was one last round of opportunity to flirt with teenaged tourists visiting family, camping, or in the mountains for vacation. It was time to locate fine stands of fox grapes for harvest in September, mark heavily laden walnuts trees for “nutting” in October, check out stands of hazel nut bushes and chinquapins, peek daily to see how the apples in Daddy’s little orchard were coming along, and enjoy the “sweet of summer” in the form of garden bounty. That involved plenty of vegetables which were a daily part of summer diet—squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans, lima beans, crowder peas, acorn squash, okra, and more. But what really appealed to me were local watermelons at full ripeness (you checked on the little pig’s tail-like appendages growing on the vines next to a melon to see if they had turned yellow to determine ripeness (Grandpa Joe was an expert in this regard) and cantaloupes and mushmelons in their prime (they were fully ripe when a push of the thumb would slip the stem away from the melon). Provided terrapins (box turtles), ‘coons, or other critters didn’t beat you to the melons, feasts of pure delight were in the offing.
Then there was play aplenty. I either had a full-time summer job or worked odd chores such as mowing lawns from the time I was 11 or 12, but somehow I always found time for simple pleasures. Recently I looked back on a few of them in a newspaper column which subsequently appeared as a guest blog on the daily offerings of my good friend (and webmaster) Tipper Pressley. Since a lot of folks seemed to identify with much of what I wrote, I’m going to share a portion of that material. It was written with the title of “Innocent Joys of a Smokies Childhood” and in recognition of what a truly grand youth I enjoyed. Here’s a sampling of those memories:
Over the decades I’ve been fortunate enough to travel extensively across the globe and in the course of those wanderings see some truly special places. The Austrian Alps have rare charm. New Zealand’s North Island features scenic beauty along with splendid sporting opportunities. Kruger National Park in South Africa with its abundant wildlife enchants. The more remote regions of the Rockies in Montana and Wyoming offer a trout fisherman’s paradise. Distant regions of Alaska, from the back country around Iliamna to the ruggedness of Kodiak Island, provide a type of wildness any nature lover has to adore. The cities and countryside of Great Britain, where perhaps five years of my life in chunks of two to six months have been spent, hold a cherished place in my heart.
But when it comes to a sense of place and appreciation of the setting which has been most meaningful in my life, nothing comes close to the native heath of my beloved Smokies. I know I’m not alone. All you have to do is think about the way these ancient hills and deep hollows draw those who were raised in them back home, ponder the fashion in which they hold one’s heart, and realization dawns that there’s something magical and mystical about the region.
Maybe you have to be away from the Smokies to appreciate them to the fullest extent, but at least for those of my generation there’s another way to reflect on and understand the allure of the region. That’s through fond looks backward to innocent joys in a geographical setting local poet Leroy Sossamon described as “the backside of heaven.”
In many ways Sossamon was a hard, difficult man, but there’s no denying the truth inherent in the words of his poem (which also furnished the title for one of his books of poetry). I won’t quote it here but rather suggest that you visit the Bryson City Cemetery on School House Hill and look at his tombstone where the words of the poem are inscribed. While there gaze out over the town, look at the Tuckaseigee, and then allow your eyes to reach out to the valley of Deep Creek and upwards to the main ridgeline of the Smokies. You’ll find the time a peaceful and meaningful one.
For now though, let’s turn to some of those joys of youth which shaped my life and that of countless others who have called Swain County home. Since those innocent pleasures varied immensely according to the time of year, perhaps a logical way of viewing them is by seasons. Summer meant the most freedom to play, even if most youngsters had some type of summer job from the time they reached their early teens, and for that reason there are more fond recollections, at least in my mind, of that period in the year. Here, in no order other than how they happen to come to my cluttered mind, are some of those wonderful ways from bygone days.
*Catching lightning bugs in the gloaming, often while adults sat on the porch nearby stringing and breaking beans, shelling crowder peas, or otherwise keeping busy even as they relaxed and enjoyed one another’s company.
*Catching June bugs (which never appeared until July and August) in the early morning, before the sun had warmed and dried them sufficiently to make flight easy, and carefully tying a length of sewing thread to one of their legs. For a time, until the captive insect wised up to the wasted effort of flying, you had your own tethered helicopter. It might have been light years removed from a remote-controlled drone, but there’s no denying the fun involved.
*Catching butterflies and moths and pinning them to cardboard. It wasn’t until many years later that I added the word lepidopterist to my vocabulary, but my interest in zebra and tiger swallowtails, skippers, Luna moths, monarchs, and the like saw many an idle hour vanish in pure delight.
*Swinging on grapevines. A good-sized grapevine anchored to a tree on a steep ridgeline could provide a wonderful ride, and there was just enough hint of danger (you didn’t want the grapevine to tear loose at the apex of your “ride” when you were many feet off the ground) to tickle youthful daredevils. These were the zip lines of my youth, and you couldn’t beat the price.
*A sort of sidelight to swinging on grapevines was “riding” saplings. The idea was to find a limber pine, poplar, or perhaps a hickory, shinny up it until the tree began to bend under your weight, and then hold on until the top of the tree bent far enough to put you back on the ground.
*Playing in branches. One of the most appealing aspects of the mountain landscape is that there are little spring branches pretty much everywhere. They offered an ideal playground for budding engineers. By moving rocks and perhaps a log or two it was possible to raise the water level from two or three inches to a couple of feet, perhaps turn some bream or other fish caught in a larger stream nearby loose in your pond, deal with the thrill of a water snake showing up, or simply piddle.
All of those activities, and many more, I directly associate with late summer. Maybe next month I can continue, easing from the doldrums of dog days into the pure, unadulterated delight of the arrival of Indian Summer (usually somewhere in the latter third of September), to wander back to those days of splendor in the flower when I was young, bullet-proof, and all the world seemed to be my oyster. Meanwhile, it’s time to continue my ongoing look and the unfolding of my career as a writer.
Much of what is presently going on in my world involves routines associated with the season. I’m up before daylight every day and spend a couple of hours working in the yard and garden before it gets unbearably hot. That mainly involves harvesting the garden’s bounty, with things presently pretty well down to cutting okra and picking crowder peas every day, gathering such tomatoes (mainly tommytoes) as are left after the worst tomato year I’ve ever had, gathering eggplant, and picking green beans. Some of the harvest is frozen, either fresh or in forms such as soup mix, while much of it is given away. There are, of course, seeds for next year to be saved, and within the next two weeks, if we can ever get some rain and the ground becomes something other than dust, it will be time to plant fall crops.
Beyond that, I’ve had several recent pieces to appear on “Sporting Classics Daily.” All deal with old-timers from the mountains whom I either knew personally or else have researched in considerable detail. The first copies of The Greatest Deer Hunting Book Ever are scheduled to arrive on August 22, and as soon as I have them in hand I’ll be mailing them to those of you who ordered in advance. If anyone else is interested, signed, inscribed copies of the 450+ page book are $35 + $5 shipping. I just finished a couple of articles for the upcoming fall issue of Carolina Mountain Life on saving heirloom seed and the “laying by” time of late summer and early fall. Beyond that I’m plodding along on two book projects that need more attention that they’ve received of late and I have a nice load of work to get done for a magazine with which I love being associated as a regular contributor, South Carolina Wildlife.
I presently stay quite close to home, and indeed I think I’ve only spent five nights away from home in all of 2018. That’s a marked contrast to what was once the case, but I’m not particularly comfortable with Ann going without my checking on her for multiple days. Also, I’m probably more of a “home body” than I once was.
With each passing month I more fully identify with a sentiment my mother expressed when she and Dad got married and moved into the home where I grew up (and which is now owned by my brother and his wife). Hers had been a peripatetic and in many ways tough life and she desperately craved stability. She told Daddy, “I don’t ever want to move again.” Until the final weeks of her life, when she moved to a nursing home because of her worsening Parkinson ’s disease, she didn’t. It was a blessing to her; one I understand much more fully now than once was the case.
MY EVOLUTION AS A WRITER—THE 1990S (PART 2)
I retired from the “professing” business at the end of the spring, 1996 semester with 25 years behind me and immediately became what I like to describe as “a recovering professor.” That was the minimum number of years the state of South Carolina required to be vested in its retirement program. I wasn’t fully vested—that required 30 years—but once I reached the age of 55 I could begin drawing retirement income and, more significantly from my perspective, would have insurance coverage for my wife and me. Meanwhile, since I was not quite there age-wise, I needed to purchase medical insurance for a year. Also, there would be no state retirement income during the same period, and obviously social security benefits lay more than a decade down the road. In other words, I had made a pretty big plunge. I was out of work, on my own, and without so much as a penny of guaranteed income. I was a full-time, big-time, freelance outdoor writer, which translated to being in a situation where I was my own boss but little more. Still, I was as happy as a mountain moonshiner with a thousand pounds of sugar, a fine crop of corn, and a copper still high up in a holler with the finest coldwater spring one could ask—and I had just about as much security. The only difference was that I was acting inside the confines of the law.
It wasn’t, however, as if I had made this major career change and was, in the words of a country song from John Conlee, “wine drunk and running.” I had, as my July newsletter pointed out, tested the waters of freelancing as fully as possible. We had no debts other than monthly utility payments and the other regular expenses of day-to-day living, and since I grew, caught, or killed most of what we ate, even that was covered. Our daughter was through college and out on her own, and I did have a number of regular writing gigs. While none of them were sure to continue unchanged into the future, they did provide comfort and a certain degree of security.
I might add though, that if I’ve learned anything as an outdoor writer, two truisms stand out: (1) The only certainty when it comes to work is constant uncertainty and (2) Not all outdoor writers are experts on their subject matter. Indeed, the ignorance or lack of ability of many of them afield and astream would shock their readers. There’s nothing really wrong with that situation as long as the writer doesn’t put himself forward as an authority; it’s just when (as an example) they come across as the last word in turkey-hunting expertise and couldn’t call a turkey to the gun if their entire career depended on it that I find troubling.
As far as my personal situation went, I had a couple of books out that were bringing in royalties on a satisfying if not exactly “get rich quick” fashion, and I had a couple more under contract. In addition, I was the general editor of two series of books, “The Firearms Classics” from Palladium Press and “The Outdoor Tennessee” collection from the University of Tennessee Press. On the magazine front, which was the closest thing to regular or predictable income for me (as was true for the vast majority of freelancers in the days before the Internet and blogs cut deep holes in print media), I had a number of solid gigs. These included the post of Editor-at-large for Sporting Classics (I still hold that position and write the Books column), co-editor (with the late Gerry Blair) of Turkey & Turkey Hunting, and some other masthead positions which came and went. At one point or another I was on the masthead of Deer & Deer Hunting, Petersen’s Hunting, North American Fisherman, Country America, Predator Xtreme, and several others which escape my sometimes challenged mind. From the beginning until the present day I’ve had one or more newspaper columns. The longest running (it was terminated a few months back) was with the local daily, The Herald, but there were also several years covering the outdoors for the News & Record (Greensboro, NC) and the Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, SC). Presently I write “Mountain Musings and Memories” for the Smoky Mountain Times, the local weekly in my hometown of Bryson City, NC.
All of these were at least to some degree predictable, but the total income they provided was nowhere near enough to fill all the budgetary cracks. That came from random assignments for a panoply of publications, some of which used my work with regularity; others only occasionally. I’ve never made a count, but the total number of magazines which have carried my byline is well over a hundred and quite possibly twice that number.
I was cranking out somewhere between 100 and 150 magazine articles a year. Some were pedestrian, such as forecasts for various state magazines published Game & Fish Publications, while others may not have paid tremendously well but at least gave me some elbow room when it came to writing in the style I preferred. South Carolina Wildlife magazine was particularly important in that regard. I wrote one entire issue of the magazine (a history of the department) and contributed regularly. Occasionally my material made the pages of publications, such as Outdoor Life, which paid top dollar (as much as a dollar a word), but far more common were contributions which netted me 25 to 40 cents a word (or less). I learned early on not to judge the economics of an assignment by the amount it paid per word. Instead, the key assessment involved how much time it took to complete and return for that expended time.
Increasingly, as I added to the list of books I had written or edited, I moved into bookselling. Having been a keen collector since boyhood, my personal library expanded to the point where I had lots of duplicates and that opened up to forays into selling out-of-print books. I continue to do that today along with peddling my own writings. It’s a tenuous kind of deal, with the Internet in general and Amazon in particular turning the book world upside down. For my part, I feel Amazon’s monopolistic tendencies have done far more bad than good, but I realize that opinion puts me in a distinct minority. That being said, if you find copies of books I have self-published there, they didn’t come from me. I prefer to retain some independence as opposed to selling my soul.
The 1990s saw two other important developments in my professional life. I had joined outdoor writers’ organizations in the 1980s, when I realized that outdoor communication was going to loom large indeed in my future, and by great good fortune some of my work had won excellence in craft awards or other recognition. I made a point of regularly attending the annual conferences of the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA), the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association (SEOPA), and the S. C. Outdoor Press Association; volunteered for committee work; and in general did what I believe is incumbent on anyone who belongs to this type of group—was an active member. As a result I eventually found myself in leadership roles in these groups. I was president of the S. C. group in 1989 and 1990, became president of SEOPA in 1994 (I served a second term as president 21 years later), and was president of OWAA in 2000. In the latter two cases holding that office meant a multi-year commitment–moving up through multiple layers of vice president and doing a post-presidential year as board chairman.
These activities involved considerable time, all of it totally unpaid, and the positions brought both gladness and some degree of sadness (more about this momentarily). Also, as adjuncts to leadership roles, I edited a cookbook for OWAA and wrote the narrative material in it, and in company with Ann did the same for a culinary collection for the S. C. Outdoor Press Association. As for the anguish, I was initially defeated in the election for SEOPA office thanks to some behind-the-scenes manipulation by the man who was the organization’s executive director at the time. His machinations weren’t aimed at me directly but rather at some board members who were at loggerheads with that individual. Eventually he left under duress, I moved into office, and I’d like to think I did a decent job of leadership. If I did, it was thanks in no small part to the new executive director, a wonderfully competent woman named Gail Wright who became and remains a cherished friend. Indeed, and this is a testament to those who pursue my craft, I met many of the folks whom I today consider my best friends through these professional groups.
My 1994 year as SEOPA president produced anguish on another front beyond the election (usually incoming officers were elected by acclimation, and in fact I think this is the only time in my years in the organization things were otherwise). My immediate predecessor as president turned out to be a scoundrel of the first magnitude who had defrauded a bunch of folks, many of them SEOPA members, of serious money. I personally talked with individuals who collectively had lost many tens of thousands of dollars in a fraudulent book publishing scheme. That balloon burst while I was president and dealing with the fallout was harrowing (and listening to the sad tales of those who had been cheated was heartbreaking). Later there would be an abrupt and personally devastating departure from OWAA (along with two other past presidents and 500 or so members), but we’ll leave that until the next newsletter.
Overall though, I feel, and feel strongly, that the time I spent in leadership roles repaid me many times over in terms of career recognition, self-satisfaction, and most especially, friendship. I had the opportunity to work with some wonderful people as fellow board members, got to know a lot of outdoor writers who influenced me as well as becoming fast friends, and worked very closely not only with the above-mentioned Gail Wright but two other organizational employees (Lisa Snuggs of SEOPA, who remains the organization’s executive director at present, and Steve Wagner of OWAA).
By the turn of the new century I was a solidly established presence as an outdoor communicator, was working incredibly hard, and still had the drive to seek new markets, put together scores of magazine queries every year, and in general stick close indeed to the staunch work ethic instilled in me by my parents. They considered hard work sacrosanct and had known, first-hand as young adults, the hard times of the Great Depression. Their frugality but especially their mindset regarding work influenced me greatly. By no stretch of the imagination was wealth pouring into this freelancer’s bank account, but Ann and I were doing just fine and, of utmost importance, I absolutely loved what I was doing. Nothing quite matches being your own boss or the excitement when something goes right or a big project comes to fruition. Of course the flip side of that equation is that anything which goes awry falls squarely in your lap and yours alone.
EPISODE ONE: FOR WANT OF A PENNY
Reader’s Digest’s immensely popular offering, “Laughter . . . The Best Medicine,” has always appealed to me because I’m a firm believer in things on the lighter side of life making that life a lot brighter. Like most families, mine has had its many ups and downs, but some of what seems to linger with me longest and strongest involves humor. Accordingly, starting with this newsletter I intend to share funny incidents from my past and that of my loved ones. I’m not at all certain of my ability to bring the episodes to anywhere approaching the hilarity they originally produced, but I’ll try. Here’s the first installment.
My brother and his wife, while raising their four children, lived in various locations, and we made it a point of getting together or a fairly regular basis. As some point while they resided in the Research Triangle area of North Carolina, their youngest son, Will (now grown and the father of children in his own right), happened to be the one who greeted me when I showed up for a visit. He was probably three or four years old at the time—full of questions, insatiably curious, and with all the innocence of youth, oblivious to anything in the way of social proprieties.
When he greeted me, he immediately asked: “Uncle Jim, do you have a penny?” I thought he pronounced the word penny a bit strangely—it came out more like “peenie”—but since I had given him gifts of loose change once or twice in the past, I thought nothing more of it. Instead, I dug into my pockets to see if I could oblige him with a penny or two. Alas, while I had nickels, dimes, and quarters (each of which I offered him in turn), not a Lincoln cent did I possess.
After digging in both pockets and checking, I said, “Will, I’m sorry, but I don’t have a penny.” At that juncture he became visibly agitated and repeatedly asked me if I had a “peenie.” At some point his mother showed up and, and as he yet again repeated his question, she flushed with obvious red-faced embarrassment. It turned out, as is often the case with small boys, that he had become somewhat fixated on that part of the male anatomy known as a penis and which he designated as a “peenie.” When I rumbled through my pants pockets and there was no “peenie” to be found, he had immediately imagined the worst and became quite distressed at the thought of his uncle having a missing member.
THE AUGUST APPETITE
Before I get into some rumination on August eatin’, I need to provide a cornbread recipe. Last month’s newsletter brought several comments, a plea or two for a specific recipe, and a recipe, complete with a packet of mix, for a pone of cornbread. The recipe I’m going to share comes from one of my favorite regional cookbooks, Joe Dabney’s Smokehouse Ham, Spoon Bread, & Scuppernong Wine. It is attributed to Aunt Martha Freeman, who was the cook for Martha Berry, the founder of Berry College. Before I get to the recipe, however, I would note that I seldom make a pone exactly the same way, and to my way of thinking there are a few “musts” for good cornbread—buttermilk, stone-ground, slow-ground meal, eggs, and bacon grease (or fatback grease) being among them. Here’s the recipe, and one of my favorite additions in the summer is to add a cob’s worth of corn kernels, still in the milk and just cut from a cob fresh out of the garden, to the batter.
3 tablespoons flour
1 ¼ cups stone-ground cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt (omit if you use grease from fatback)
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 cup, plus a bit if the batter seems too thick, of buttermilk
2 tablespoons bacon or fatback grease
½ teaspoon soda
Stir ingredients thoroughly in a mixing bowl (I find a large whisk works best) and pour batter into a pre-heated and well-seasoned cast iron pan. I set the oven at 425 degrees and pour enough grease into it to coat before heating the pan. Bake until the top turns golden brown (the bottom of the pone with be a crispy, dark brown and if your “spider” is seasoned properly it will slide off onto a serving plate with the greatest of ease.
Figs seem to be one on those things you either love or don’t care for at all. I happen to belong to the former persuasion and as these words are being written the largest of my three fig bushes is so heavy with ripe or ripening fruit that it is dragging the ground. In fact, when I was working in the garden at dawn, a daily ritual for me during dog days when it’s too hot to do much of anything after 9:00 a.m. or so, I got a head start on breakfast with half a dozen ripe figs right from the bush. I like fig preserves or a syrupy concoction featuring figs that is dandy as a pancake topping, but along with raw ones my favorite way to eat them is stuffed with ricotta cheese. Just wash ripe figs gently (they are very fragile, especially the variety I have), slice in half, and top with a goodly dollop of ricotta cheese. Mighty fine for breakfast or as a light dessert.
CONCORD GRAPES, MUSCADINES, AND SCUPPERNONGS.
I dearly love grapes and have far more muscadines and scuppernongs (actually they are the same, though folks of my ken call the dark ones muscadines and the greenish-gold varieties scuppernongs) than I normally know what to do with. That may not be the case this year, because critters I haven’t fully identified yet, although I strongly suspect ‘coons are the culprits and a trap may be in their near future, have been working on them before they are anywhere near fully ripe. However, the one vine of Concord grapes I have went totally untouched. Usually birds, with some assistance from yellow jackets, get most of them.
Concord grapes make wonderful jams or jellies. In fact, the only thing in this category I think compares is fox grape jelly. Muscadines work quite nicely in this regard as well, but where they really stand out is in an old-fashioned hull pie, something I had never eaten until I was grown, or in properly made wine.
CLEAN OUT THE FREEZER VENISON
Another deer season lies just around the corner, and if you are like me, you need to clean out the freezer from last year’s hunting in anticipation of putting new meat in it thanks to successful hunts. Most folks have the majority of their deer meat processed as ground meat or cubed steak, and here are a couple of options if you have any left.
1 pound cubed venison steak (pounded with a meat hammer until thin—about ¼ inch
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup water
¼ cup white wine
1 teaspoon chicken flavored bouillon crystals
1 lemon, divided
1 tablespoon parsley
Pound cutlets, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and coat with flour. Brown quickly in hot olive oil and remove from the pan.
Reduce heat to medium low and into the drippings add butter, water, wine, minced garlic, juice of half a left and parsley. Scrape to loosen brown bits from cutlets and return the cutlets to the skillet. Place thin slices of lemon atop each cutlet. Cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until cutlets are tender.
1 pound ground venison
½ cup onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups cook, mashed potatoes
¼ cup milk
1 egg, beaten
Lightly mix venison, onion, garlic, potatoes, and salt and pepper. Make into patties. Beat egg and milk in a shallow dish. Dip each patty in egg and milk mixture and then roll in cracker meal (I prefer Saltines). Brown patties in a non-stick skillet with just enough oil to keep from sticking (2 to 3 tablespoons). Cook over medium heat until done and serve immediately.
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- Russell A. Hopper, Angler Profiles: A Collection of Some Legendary Angler’s Favorite Flies, Foods, Rods & Waters. Bowling Green, KY: The Hope Group, 2000. Paperbound. xiv, 327 pages. There are hundreds of noted anglers listed here with this information. I was one of them and I’ll gladly sign my entry. All other things aside, you’ll get some truly great recipe from these pages. Only one copy available. $27.50 postpaid.
- Ronnie “Cuz” Strickland, The Truth about Turkey Hunting. I’ve known Cuz since my earliest years as a writer, and as I often tell him, I knew him before he became famous. Those of you who hunt turkeys or deer, use Mossy Oak camo, or watch much outdoors television will readily recognize his name. He’s funny, extremely bright, talented, and a genuinely good guy. His first book was The Truth, with sequels carrying the titles The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth. The first volume in the trilogy has become increasingly difficult to find and I’ve seen copies offered at well over $100. I have a goodly stock and am offering it for $15 postpaid. If you don’t enjoy it your funny bone is out of kilter.
- Deer hunting books—If you check my website you’ll find a quite large selection of books on deer hunting, and many of them are priced quite reasonably or even at bargain basement prices. For the next month only (through the end of September) I’m offering some special rates for those books. Buy five or more items and take 15% off the list price AND shipping is free. Buy 10 or more items and you’ll get 20% off with free shipping.