Saturday, August 16, 2008

Tight Dresses, Rental Dawgs, & Traffic

This column was originally published in the Smith Mountain Eagle on August 22, 2007.

Howdy, Ida B. Peevish coming at you from Ida’s Salon of Beauty & Live Bait Shop where most of my clients have been marking time until their kids go back to school and they can see some peace and quiet. Mainly they will have time to get theirselves fixed up again down here at Ida’s Salon of Beauty & Live Bait Shop. Some are concerned about a certain high school’s “tighter dress code” on account their daughters’ dresses are about as tight as they can get, and the gals don’t see how they can get them any tighter to bring them up to code. I just refer them to the Rock Bottom House of Polyester up at the mall where Spandex is always a good fashion choice. Now lessee what we got in the mail:

Dear Ida B. I seen a while back in the Big Mall City paper that some folks in one of them big cities has started a business wherein they arrange for other folks to get timeshares in dawgs. Kinda like the dawgs is owned by a bunch of folks instead of just one. Since I own quite a few dawgs that I only use during hunting season, I figger this is a good way to make a little extra cash and let others feed my dawgs at the same time. I would like to learn how this system works, on account I don’t think I did it right. What I done was drive Flossie and her pups out to one of them real classy Slick Water Lake neighborhoods. I didn’t see nary a dawg in sight, so I figured folks there might be needful of them. I thought I had the rope tied real good to Flossie and the pups when I knocked on the door of a big house, but when some lady opened the door them dawgs broke loose and commenced to running through the place. The lady commenced to squalling and carrying on like you wouldn’t believe whilst I tried to explain my rate system to her. Well, it weren’t long til them dawgs came running out with pieces of some fur coat in their mouths. Then the woman really pitched a fit. She said they had ruined her 1920s raccoon coat that she had just bought off eBay. (I’m not familiar with that store, but if it ain’t in Rock Bottom, it probably ain’t worth shopping at.) I tried to explain that a coat that old ain’t fit to wear on account you don’t know what kinda crawly critters have took up residence in it, but I don’t think she paid me no mind.

Now, Ida B., my question is, how do I get her to pay the vet bill for them pups. Eating that coat made them real sick to their stomachs, and one thing you do not want is several hound dawgs throwing up all over the seat of your pick-up on a regular basis. After I dropped the pups off at the vet, I drove the pick-up through the carwash with the windows down and that took care of the mess, so I figure she owes me the $5 for that expense, too.—Needs to Collect

Dear Needy: Odds are good she ain’t gonna pay you. I figure you just need to cut your losses. Maybe you can claim it as a deduction on your taxes, but I’m guessing you never got around to paying taxes. You might be thrilled—or at least consoled—to know that your letter qualified you for the “Stupidest Thing a Man Has Done This Week” award that we give here at Ida’s Salon of Beauty & Live Bait Shop. All of my customers voted you as the winner. When you come in to collect your complimentary can of nightcrawlers, please do not bring your dawgs.

Dear Ida B. I have condo at Slick Water Lake where I spend most weekends and holidays, and I am having a terrible problem getting there. Once there, I have a terrible time driving from one place to another. All the roads are full of cars—sometimes bumper to bumper. I have tried blasting the horn on my Hummer to try to get people to move out of the way, but there’s not much “out of the way” left, what with all the shops and condos built right up to the roadside. Is something going to be done about the crowded road situation?—Impatient Out-of-Towner

Dear Out-of-It: As a matter of fact, some plans are in the works right now. Town council, which meets at the Rock Bottom Bar & Grill after bowling on Thursday nights was discussing the matter recently. Their plans ain’t been leaked to the press, but they have been plugged into the gossip pipeline here at Ida’s Salon of Beauty & Live Bait Shop by a very reputable source (my manicurist, Honey Sue Sweetwater who moonlights as a waitress at the RBB&G). It seems that several folks are going to build helicopter pads around Slick Water Lake for purposes of emergency transport. Most situations will qualify as emergency. For example, when you want to go to Ida’s Salon of Beauty & Live Bait Shop, ain’t that an emergency? If so, the helicopter will pick you up and drop you off. All you got to do is stand on your deck and catch on to the rope ladder that they’ll drop. If you are afraid of heights, you’d best get over it. Another option is the Slick Water Lake Ferry. A group of investors are planning on operating ferry boats to take you from one place to another on the lake. If you don’t want to go any particular place—no problem. The Ferry can convert to a sight-seeing boat pretty doggone quick. This should take care of some of the traffic problem, or at least move it to the air and the lake.

Well, that’s it for this go-round. Remember, you get what you pay for, talk is cheap, and my advice is free. But if you want to pay for my advice, More Peevish Advice is available. It’s the perfect gift to give houseguests who have overstayed their welcome, and I know some of y’all still got guests who came for Easter week and ain’t left yet.