Slemp wants to know if you come to the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, will they have a big field you can get in and get drunk and swap horses all day long? He doesn't use the word equine because he doesn't know if it is ee-kwine or eck-kwine and being from Eastern Kentucky, would not want to be caught in Lexington saying words wrong. He pronounces "horse" well, with all three syllables.
Slemp thinks Danville is getting a little full of itself but nonetheless was tickled by the Dudamel thing, which he thought meant he had won an argument with Tie Rod. They had argued to the brink of falling out over who is the best band leader. Slemp claims it is Gustavo Dudamel and Tie Rod argues it is Del McCoury.
To the news that the horse people picked Dudamel, Tie Rod said bring Dudamel and let him hear J. D. Crowe, and in a week the conductor of the Los Angeles Symphony would take a new job in Kentucky playing mandolin and trying to sing Vincent Black Lightnin' 1952.
Tie Rod can be pretty stubborn at times. At 11:30 on election night, he vowed to fast until some television station, just one among those several hundred remotely available, would tell him who had won the race for county judge in his county, and not just run over and over at the bottom of the screen the results of the Breathitt County Constable Race, Dist. 4, with 7 percent of the vote in. Over and over.
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Tie Rod watches television on election night to find out who won, and wants to know in time to get to the party, and change his bumper sticker if he has to. Nothing is more important in the mountains than getting to the party of the winner on time. Or worse than accidentally going to the loser's party because the television stations who have people in courthouses who know who won the election just won't tell the viewer.
Tie Rod's fast in protest of election reporting lasted about a day and a half, broken only by some cold poke. Tie Rod thinks cold poke, right out of the refrigerator with vinegar, ought to be the state food.
Tie Rod and Slemp are in opposite political parties, and both had choices in the primary. Slemp got to choose between a guy whose qualifications for the Senate were that he was tall and had cleverly named himself Trey because of all those sticks out from his name, and a guy who started out as Randy and wisely named himself without the Y, and who always had the same little piece of hair out of place in the same place.
Studied carelessness, Slemp calls that fake stray hair stuff. Dr. Paul knew right exactly where that little bit of stray hair was.
Tie Rod had to choose between a guy who looks like a senator and doesn't muss up his own hair and a guy who looks like Bunning said he does.
There are two big problems East of Winchester. One being the fact that the coal industry in its next, which will also be its last, 20 or so years is going to tear down each and every mountain and destroy each and every stream.
All four candidates were all for that, trying to see who could say so the loudest. Do Tie Rod and Slemp want all coal-bearing mountains to be torn down? No. What, then, will stop that? Nothing. And anybody for that, in the eyes of Tie Rod and Slemp, is either ignorant or boughten.
The other problem, the prescription pill scourge, might well have not existed for all the talk it got in the primary. It has turned Tie Rod and Slemp's people into people who steal to buy stuff that kills them. Tie Rod and Slemp wait to be surprised if any sense is talked about this issue in the fall election and some candidate will come out for getting people back to drinking again in place of those pills.
But if the whiskey-tasting bill passes, Tie Rod and Slemp figure to tour a distillery about twice a month and get drunk almost free. An ounce and a half might have to be supplemented a little.
Larry Webster is a Pikeville attorney.