When Tie Rod says "retch" for reach, "holpen" for helped, or "nary'" for not a, he feels like Che, in revolt against authority.
These words survive in defiance of education in the mountains, as does practically everything else worth holding on to. Tie Rod has been trying to figure out how education has helped the mountains and he can't do it.
Tie Rod was plowing with his mule, Sarah Jessica, trying to decide if he believed in evolution. He named her thus for the resemblance. His other mule is named Ellen DeGeneres because she isn't funny either. Sarah, the mule, gets him to thinking about breeding and evolution.
He figures mules are an evolutionary improvement on horses and that Keeneland better get out in front of the mule sales trade. If mules get big, Tie Rod will be a fat cat and change parties.
Never miss a local story.
Sarah Jessica is such a well-trained mutation that when you get to the end of a row she automatically stops and turns around and goes back the other way.
One time a salesman come up in a big suit while Tie Rod was plowing, and was waiting at the end of the row. When Tie Rod got back to the end, he hollered, "Halt, pivot, and redirect!" which Sara Jessica did, as she would have no matter what anybody hollered or didn't holler.
The salesman, amazed, asked Tie Rod how in the world he taught a mule language like that. " I sent her to school," was all Tie Rod ever told him.
When Tie Rod watches the Republican debates, he says that when you ask one of them a question, they just halt, pivot and redirect, all muley-like. He says he is going to call Barnum and Bailey and ask them if their clown car came loose from the circus train.
Retching to the Rich is what Tie Rod calls the Republican grand idea, even though he sort of admires Republicans for their honesty in admitting out loud that the rich is all they give a crap about. He is glad somebody is finally standing up for wealth. Politicians are always trying to accuse the wealthy of stuff, like hoarding money.
But he feels sorry for the top 1 percent because the rich get real small portions of their food and have to eat soup made out of squash and have to put garlic on what little they do get to eat. Tie Rod got on one of those weight-loss diets and like to have starved to death. Now he is on five of them.
Tie Rod has two ideas to save the government. He wrote them up and went down to the post office to see if there was like a suggestion box or something to drop them in. One was to pardon Bernie Madoff. He got more money out of the rich than the government does, and maybe he could Ponzi China for us.
Tie Rod, who says his time spent as a laborer was "fattening frogs for snakes," was so devastated to hear that all those rich people lost their money that he slept late.
His other big political idea was to have elections for president and whoever wins gets to try his stuff out and see if it works or not. Tie Rod has had difficulty with the idea of veto power at the house, something his mate has assumed, or at the United Nations, where we use it to isolate from the rest of the world.
Of course, if we did quit using the veto power to void elections, and started letting elections count, we would have to give Barack Obama another shot.
Larry Webster is a Pikeville attorney. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.