February 7, 2011

Except for the first few paragraphs of each chapter, I took Dead Ginny off the net in 2005 but if you want to read and/or listen to the sucker for free, click this. Thanks. G.


Gerard Jones

Chapter One

I'm using everyone's real name. They can all sue me. I hope they do. I could use the excitement. It gets kind of boring living up here with my seventy-nine year-old mother in Ashland, Oregon. She likes having me around, though. She was getting a little tired of being by herself. My dad died awhile ago. Going on eight years now. Sometimes it feels like yesterday. Sometimes it feels like he's still alive. We keep finding scribbles of his ninth grade handwriting here and there; like when you go to change a fuse in the fuse box or dig through the glove compartment, looking for a map. Plenty of other people don't seem to know he's dead, either. They keep sending him mail. Get rich quick schemes. Brochures from hearing aid companies. Letters telling him how he might want to consolidate his debt. Hey, his debt's as consolidated as it gets. It's paid. Paid in full. Going on eight years now.

I do the things my father used to do. Mow the lawn. Get the car fixed. Put in new light bulbs. Change the furnace filters. Take the lids off jars that are on too tight for my mother's arthritis. Other than that, I pretty much just play golf. I play golf every day. Rain or shine, it doesn't matter; wind, sleet, hail, you name it. The rainier and windier the better. Sometimes I get to feeling a little like King Lear out there. Talking to thunder. Flipping off gusts of wind. I might even hold my putter up in the air like a lightening rod, daring the elements to do their worst, but usually I pretty much just play golf. I play golf with anyone who shows up. Ford. Wallace. Bergeron. Richie Rich. Felix. Knapp. Tyrone. Tyrone's a black guy from the Shakespeare Festival. He was the King of France last year.

We all play golf at Oak Knoll. It's a little nine hole course. There are blue tees for the front and white tees for the back. Standing on the ninth tee, you can see everything for miles around; Pilot Rock directly in front of you, Mt. Ashland over to your right, Grizzly Peak and Pompadour Bluff sort of to the left. The golf course is home to five families of Canadian Geese. Nobody fucks with them. They poo on the greens with impunity. Even the feisty mallards and wood ducks and the seagulls that fly over from Klamath Lake stay out of their way. The five families of geese at Oak Knoll correspond roughly with the five families of the New York Mafia. Well, according to Richie Rich, anyway. He knows all about that sort of thing. Richie Rich isn't his real name. I don't know whether they gave it to him as part of a witness protection program or not. All I know is you don't want to beat him out of more than a couple bucks if you don't want to wake up with a horse's head in your bed.

It's an eclectic group. Wallace drives a Winnebago. Wait a minute. Maybe it's a Pace Arrow. Whichever is the better of the two, that's the one Wallace drives. Wallace knows his r.v. vehicles. You don't want to mix one up with another around him. He's also a direct descendent of William Wallace, that Braveheart guy, so you kind of want to watch how much money you beat him out of too. Ford has trouble keeping his trousers on. Bergeron has a twinkle in his eye. Knapp carries beer in a blue cooler in the summer and drinks whisky in the winter. Felix hangs drywall and thinks he's Lee Trevino. We all make up Mexican sounding things to say to him. He says Mexican things back to us. Felix was one of my dad's buddies at the Elks. My dad used to make up Mexican sounding things to say to him too.

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Gerard Jones
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