Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hershel's Famous Hunting Speech

Abbeville, MS> We were still at our old camp in Abbeville and I was about 13 when it happened. It had been a long winter of deer hunting and no one had taken a deer that year. The hunters were tired, discouraged and flat worn out. Our supplies were low, tempers flared and most hunters were ready to throw in the towel.
Right at dark Mr. Fay Clemmons came in and said that he had seen a big boar coon right down the ridge as he was coming out of the woods and it had scooted up a tree and gone into a hole. That was all my Dad needed. Organizing a coon party, and securing a pistol they headed off and soon I heard the blam!, blam! of the pistol. The elated coon party arrived back at camp and I asked what they were going to do with the coon. “We are having coon for supper” my Dad answered. That left a sick feeling, but It wasn’t long ‘til the kitchen was filled with the smell of frying coon and everyone waited in hopes that it was edible. It wasn’t.
We nibbled on it, and pushed it around our plates and when we finally gave up on eating the damn thing, my father banged his glass a few times on the table then stood up.
He said in a jovial tone “I hope you all enjoyed the meal tonight and it looks like we have plenty if you are still hungry. His voice then turned steely and hard "Tomorrow, if someone does not kill a deer we will be having leftover coon for supper, so I suggest that you do not come in from hunting tomorrow without a deer!”
Needless to say, there were some serious hunters in the woods the next day and that morning the spell was broken and a deer was finally taken.
Please remember to sign up below for the Virtual Deer Hunt. I am going to need some action pics from our hunters.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The DCB Virtual Deer Hunt

I am going to start putting together a Virtual Deer Hunt at the famous Christmas Place. I have had this in my mind for quite awhile now and believe that it is going to be one of the hardest, and most fun endeavors that I have posted.
If you wish to be included, I need you to leave a comment and state whether you are hunting deer, hogs, fishing or just relaxing at the camp.
Elizabeth scanned the edge of the 10 Point Field from her stand and hoped that a deer would soon appear. As dawn broke, she could see the forest come alive around her with the barking of squirrels and chattering of birds. "Ten Point field" she thought to herself "Hmmmphh, I hope it is and not some crap Rex is pulling my leg about. He and his wild stories" Daylight was here and she scanned the edge of the field again, then studied the old forest around her with it's ancient trees and rolling, rugged strange landscape. So strange that maybe, just maybe, a lot of what he had told was true. She watched a squirrel for a minute, then heard the sound of footsteps moving toward her through the crisp oak leaves. Oh God, that sounds like a deer as her heart skipped a beat. The footsteps moved closer and sounded extremely heavy. A big buck? Oh My God, Maybe Thunderhoof? Was he real?
Her heart was racing and she felt like she had to pee, but steadied herself and eased her rifle into position as she finally saw movement at the edge of the field and the ............

Sign up and join me on a virtual deer hunt.
PS you are going to be in it anyway so you might as well sign up.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Creepy Hippie

Water Valley, MS> When I went out on my porch yesterday, I turned to admire those stinking flea-bitten damn goats that have taken up residency in my side yard. Then I realized that there was a note attached to my wall.
Obviously left by one of those stinking, long haired, unkempt, treehugging, goathugging, envirowhacko commie hippies that reads my blog (thanks!)
Witnesses told me that they don’t know his name but he has a tattoo that says TINY and he was heading south toward the office of Old Scratch.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Welcome Max

A new link on my sidebar is called Max Mississippi. They give a good roundup of interesting things going on in our home state right now. Crab boils, baseball, the science museum and penguins too.
Most of their links are local, Marian and Crystal need to link up with them.
They do not know it yet but I am laying plans for them to be the centerpiece of a Mississippi Bloggers badge like we are doing with the OBS.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Running A Business In Water Valley, MS

Water Valley, MS> First, my office is located in the middle of the so-called business district facing the town park/square.
You know that you are in Water Valley, MS when you step out the front door of your office glance into the vacant lot next to your office and see this...
Yes, I know it is a damn goat.
Where is my shotgun?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

It Was Thaaaat Close

Defeated, MS> Hershel Howell came thaaat close to a perfect weekend and walked away with nothing. It started Thursday afternoon when he reached camp and decided to go up to the lake to see if the crappie were biting. He stood on the pier and in about 15 minutes had caught 6 slab crappie, enough for dinner for he and Trigger and Dad headed back to camp.
The next morning at daylight he was sitting in his blind at the Double Whiteoak field. He put on his earphones and holy crap!, he was surrounded by turkeys shaking the trees with their gobbling. It wasn't long 'till three of them came into the field to check out his decoys. They wandered closer and closer, then hung up at about 35 yards. He picked out a really gigantic gobbler and pulled the trigger. Bl-Plattt! Bi-Plattt? the bullet misfired and the 14 inch gobbler hopped into the woods and was gone.
I have very seldom ever heard of a shotgun shell misfiring but it was terribly bad luck at the most inopportune time. Dad headed back to camp and decided to go fishing again that afternoon.
He launched the boat and started easing around using his jig pole. He caught a couple of crappie and then hooked what he thought was a stump, a stump until it started towing him up the lake. Dad worked the fish for over an hour as it pulled him all over the lake and each time it swam under the boat to break his line he was lucky enough to spin the boat around. Most of the time the tip of his jig pole was almost bent double into the water. Finally, the big fish rose. He could see that it was a giant catfish of between 40-50 pounds. The fish stayed up for just a few seconds then dove straight under the boat. The hook finally gave out, snapped, and the big fish was gone.
He came thaaat close to a perfect weekend.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Bushwacker Grove

Chestnut, MS> No, I did not get a turkey. We only went to camp this weekend to meet David Hyde, who had come up to fix us all a quail dinner. Let me tell you that it was delicious. Meeting with David gave me some ideas how to upgrade the blog a little also. Hope you will enjoy what I have in store for you. Especially, Elizabeth at Deer Passion who says that I having been creeping her out lately (a lot).
Spring is in the air here. The dogwoods are in bloom and the time had come to keep a promise to my old friend The Suburban Bushwacker. We have talked about planting chestnuts on the Christmas Place from jolly old England but did not get it worked out. That's OK. While I was in Ireland and France I picked up handfuls of chestnuts and brought them back. I promised I would plant them and name the spot, Bushwacker Grove.
Denise, Camo and I headed to the north cornfield and the grass facing it and I started planting the seeds. We marked them with red flags and I sure hope they make it. I also hope the damn hogs don't find them. Denise would not get off of the 4-wheeler because she was afraid of snakes and Camo was not worth a damn helping me plant the chestnuts, she would not even look for shed antlers. Worthless! Denise did take pictures and we drove around a little looking for sheds with no luck and we headed back to camp. We did not stop and let Camo drink in the creek or get near water, Denise was afraid an alligator would get her and probably us too.

The planting did not take long and it was an absoulutely beautiful morning, so we had fun except Camo got tired and we had to haul her butt back on the 4- wheeler. So, it is done and the Bushwacker Grove is a reality. Remember to go over to his site and comment that this has been started for the Suburban Bushwacker when he finally comes over here to go elk hunting or try his hand at blasting the mighty Thunderhoof.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Jeff's God

My Dad just received news from his publisher that they are going to publish his second book named "Jeff's God"
This story centers on a 16 year old boy at the outbreak of the Civil War in Oxford, MS and his growth into a man as he fights in the Battle of Shiloh, is wounded, faces occupation from the Yankee troops, is sentenced to die as a spy, escapes with the Yankee payroll as he is about to be hung, his wild flight to New Mexico and the friendship he develops with the last of the free Indian tribes there.
He falls in love, faces all kinds of rigors on the trail, returns to Oxford and the era of Reconstruction, then makes a decision that changes his life.
A very interesting tale to say the least.
I have gathered almost everyones email address to send a notice out to. Hope you won't mind. Should be out in a couple of months.
I hope you all will enjoy it.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Reminiscing About Spiders and Snakes

Yes, another post about one of the Top Outdoor Bloggers. (OK, I'm jealous)
Mark and I are both men of the world and we spend a lot of time talking about hunting and the big deer we have taken. We also talk about women. He talks about how he met Jody and I talk about Denise, but remarkably our stories are quite similar.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Denise, Jody and Snakeophobia

This deal with snakes is killing me. I want Denise to go out in the woods with me in the middle of the winter, she wants to know if there are snakes. Shed hunting? snakes? metal-detecting? snakes? fishing? snakes? Every outdoor activity involves the question of snakes. Jody is of the same mindset and seems to believe that a python lurks behind every tree.
Denise also worries about snakes at home.
Close the garage door, a snake might get in.
Lock the front door, don't want a snake to get in (lock?)
Camo ran off down the hill, go check on her, don't want a snake to bite her.
I'll be glad to help in the yard as long as you make sure there aren't any snakes.
Jody and Denise do not know much about these giant killer snakes but I can assure you, they know that they are all poisonous.
Good Grief!
These are some simple things you should remember if Mark or I take you in the woods.
1. Yes, we are going to see a snake. This goes without saying, because if you take someone terrified of snakes in the woods there is a 100% chance you will see one.
2. Do not scream. SNAKE!!! This terrifies me and is annoying as hell.
3. Do not run. The snake you just woke up with your screams has a big nasty cousin just down the trail that does not like being trampled half to death.
4. Do not panic. Most snakes are just lying around minding their own business. If you see them you can ease away, go around or walk by without disturbing them. Do not go crazy and start whacking it with a stick, this really pisses them off and is when 99.9% of all snakebites occur.
5. Do not worry that the snake will get you. Contrary to womens’ beliefs, snakes are not race horses waiting to run you down and do whatever snakes do to their prey. They are not ravenous blood suckers waiting around for human prey. They would probably prefer a mouse or a frog instead of your leg. Right, Terri?
6. Wait. Mark or I will know exactly what to do when we see a snake. Do not jump on our back, making us fall over onto the snake. It could get hairy then.
7. When walking, try to train yourself to walk through the woods stepping over sticks. This helps you be quiet and you avoid stepping on a stick that may be alive. In fact, it would be a great favor to us if you would practice lifting your feet as you walk in the woods instead of dragging your feet everywhere and ending up with a bloody rattle-moccassin wrapped around your foot.
8. Pay attention and be quiet. Watch for everything, including snakes. You will get more out of your trip and hopefully not let a boa constrictor jump out of a tree into your blouse. Talking about nothing also distacts us while we are watching to make sure you don't get eaten by a cobra.
9. Take a walking staff/ stick. This helps you keep your balance, gives you a false sense of security and you can poke it in the weeds ahead of you if needed. If Mark let's you get too close to a snake you can also whack him.
10. Good-Luck Mark

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Big Red Hog

Noturk, MS> "Whacka-Whacka, Quack, Quack, Squawk!" I expertly worked the old box call waiting for a big gobbler to appear. "Whack, Squawk-Squawk, Quack". The weather was cold and rainy, the sky was overcast and dreary and there was not a damn turkey in the whole county. I kept working the call while I slowly froze to death and suddenly in the distance I heard a single gunshot.
Paul had brought up his friend Joey Anderson and his son Trey to hunt on the first weekend of turkey season and it was miserable. They had opted out of the turkey hunt that Saturday afternoon and Joey had slipped into the box at the base of the leevee to try for a hog. He was excited to give it a try because he had never seen a hog in the wild before. It got interesting very quick.
The hog wandered out into the grass field right before dark and even at 300 yards Joey knew that the big red killer would get him if he was not careful. He eased his shaking arms around with the rifle and aimed. He had to make a perfect shot. What if that horrible thing caught him and ate him? He aimed carefully. BLAM!
I coaxed Joey out of the stand right at dark and we searched for about 30 minutes for the big red hog. No luck. We headed in to camp.
The weather was so nasty that we neither saw or even heard turkeys this weekend, but even so, Joey and Trey were excited about the big red hog. Coming in Sunday morning from another lonely turkey hunt, the hog was standing in the field again. They raced to the camp and Trey grabbed a rifle. He headed back, met Paul on the road and they started easing toward the red varmint. They drove within 60 yards of the hog without it spooking and stopped. Then the big red hog looked up and straight at Trey. Trey felt his bones turn to slush as he looked into the red flames in the big hogs eyes.
He threw up his rifle, hastily aimed, then BLAM! The hog looked around and trotted into the deep grass. Trey wiped the sweat from his brow and wondered how he could have missed. Paul wiped his face too, in disbelief, and headed back to camp.
The big red hog is still there ready to get any Andersons that wander by and hopefully Joey and Trey will redeem themselves and get another chance. Here is a pic of the losers at turkey camp.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Mysterious Package

Water Valley, MS> When I reached my office this morning, I found a mysterious package sitting in the middle my desk. Now I am used to receiving death threats, strange powders and bombs in my mail from jealous bloggers, but I was a little confused with this one. Eagerly I checked the shipping label and Ah-Hah! This was the package from Scott Linden Outdoors! I double-checked it for explosives and ripped it open.

My brilliant, computer like mind had easily stunned the world as I won the Scott Linden Outdoors Radio Show giveaway. Besides the gobs of cash, there were some very cool gifts inside. A Coleman lantern/flashlight, a neat survival tool, an in the field knife sharpener, a book "Chasing the Hunters Dream" by Jeff and Sherol Engel, a nice old style tin ad to go on the wall celebrating Alaskan Amber Beer, a T-shirt with a Rainbow Trout on it from flyingfisherman.com and an autographed picture of the gorgeous Teena Hubbard. What more could a man want! Go visit their site, it is fun, informative and you too could win the Outdoor Giveaway.

Friday, March 13, 2009

A New Card/Badge

I have been tinkering with the idea for one of those little banners I see added to peoples pages. Of course, that stupid deer wanted to make sure he was on it. I stole the pic off Yahoo so I might have to redo it later. anyway let me know if you like it or have a better idea.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Back To Turkeys

Double Gobble, MS> Enough of that, let's get back to hunting. Turkey season opens this weekend and it looks like everyone except me and Mark are ready. Shooting turkeys at the Christmas Place is about like shooting fish in a barrel. We are heading down tomorrow even though the weather has turned cold, icy and very damn frosty.
I have no quarrel with the turkeys and only want to go in hopes Spencer can get one. If he doesn't go, Mark and I will probably sit out for awhile and stack them up like cordwood. Hell, Dad gets a turkey every year and he can't hear thunder. Too bad Othmar is not going to be here, running an empire doesn't leave much time for hunting. I hope to get Marian up in a week or so to try it and Critter too.
These turkeys are a nuisance and are messing up my deer hunting, if you are interested in blasting one of these overgrown vultures leave me a comment.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Painting the Kudzu Monster

Water Valley, MS> It was the spring after Katrina hit New Orleans as Bill Warren and his sweet wife Pati were doing what everyone does during Mardi Gras. Yes, they were staggering down Bourbon street at three in the morning on their way home. They were surprised (to say the least) when they spotted a giant deer covered with beads standing on the corner waiting for a street car. They immediately struck up a conversation and politely ignored the drunk naked woman riding on the deers' back. The deer told them all about the famous Christmas Place, me and the small town of Water Valley. Being adventurous, they decided to pack their things and move here for the small town atmosphere and growing art community and to be near the cultural artist center of Oxford and Ole Miss.
Bill and Pati are both exceptional artist and have quickly become a welcome part of the community. Bill knows art and had his own gallery in New Orleans and I want to introduce you to some of his work since he has been here.

"House On Panola"
this sits diagonally across from his home, and is a 30's style brick bungalow

"Kudzu Communion"
Bill has taken the quick growing and hated Kudzu and turned it into a living thing in many of his paintings.

"Kudzu Candidate"
maybe Kudzu is king here?

"Kudzuka and Friends"

this is my favorite and shows the influence of this horrible plant.

Bill calls everyday wanting to paint a picture of Thunderhoof. I hope that I can set it up soon and he can do as impressive a job as Susan did. Bill is set up with BrainWare Artworks in Water Valley and these are all for sale.
His email is puppetcode2@gmail.com to ask for pricing or to get info on his works.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Thunderhoof, Paul Bunyan and Babe

It was the year of the two winters and even in Mississippi the weather had been unseasonably cool. Up North the weather had been so cold that almost all the forest had been cut for firewood and so many people froze that they stacked them up as a windbreak around the towns. In the South the temperatures got way below 50 degrees and there was even talk of snow. People in Mississippi were absolutely miserable from the cold.
During this time, the famed giant lumberjack, Paul Bunyan, heard about the pristine ancient forest located in the Mississippi Delta. Trees here were gigantic and the thought of logging in that wild uncharted forest sounded just right for him to spread his fame to the south as the greatest lumberjack to ever live. He and his enormous blue ox named Babe headed south.
Paul Bunyan set up his camp near present day Greenwood on the Yazoo River and started cutting. Babe was kept busy pulling the enormous logs to the Yazoo river and later the Mississippi River for transport. It did not take long for them to clear a swath across the delta and the constant dragging of logs smoothed the land as flat as a pancake. Everything went well until they finally reached the base of the bluffs near the little town of Thornton, Mississippi.
Thunderhoof, the Guardian of the Forest, had heard about these strangers and after seeing their handiwork of clear cutting of the vast Delta Rain Forest was enraged. Thunderhoof is the last of the Irish Elk and has guarded the Mississippi Delta since the Ice Age. Wise, powerful, magical and extremely smart, he saw the destruction of his forest and charged headlong into the lumber operation to challenge these interlopers.
Sparks flew from his hoofs and the sound of thunder blasted as he flew like an arrow into the camp to fight. The very first thing he saw stopped him dead in his tracks. A giant Blue Ox with horns fourteen feet across! Babe, the giant Blue Ox stood in the center of the camp eating the treetops of the immense virgin cypress trees. Thunderhoof wasted no time and gave a bellow that was quickly answered by Babe and they charged at each other headlong. The spot where they crashed together is now called Blue Deer Lake. Both of them were stunned from the crash but quickly regained their feet and the fight was on!
They tore up 70 miles of forest between the bluffs and the Mississippi river, and the dirt that they moved formed a large part of the Mississippi levee. After three days of fighting, bloodied and exhausted the mighty Blue Ox finally admitted he was beaten and bowed his head in surrender and that great fight was over.
Thunderhoof was not in much better shape and soon saw the giant lumberjack headed his way with an axe the size of a redwood tree. The exhausted deer prepared to charge but suddenly Babe the Blue Ox rammed into the side of Paul Bunyan and stopped him cold. Babe made it clear that the fight was over and it was time to go back home to Minnesota. Paul Bunyan scratched his head, petted the big ox on the head, smiled and then bowed to Thunderhoof. The famous lumberjack packed his things, threw his enormous ax over his shoulder and headed for new territory in the Northwest that very day. It was the greatest fight that Thunderhoof had ever had and as usual, he, Paul Bunyan and Babe later became friends. Large portions of the delta were ruined and later became the vast cotton fields that makeup huge portions of the delta today.
No one really knows what happened to Paul Bunyan and Babe in later years, they just seemed to wander further into the Northwest territory and out of existence.
The people of the delta were so thankful to Thunderhoof that they built a huge statue in Greenwood to honor the battle. To this day, deep in the Mississippi delta, the mighty Thunderhoof still guards the remaining old forest.

Monday, March 09, 2009

A Low-Key Birthday

Hi Everyone,
Today is my birthday and it is going to be a very low key affair. I am in the real estate/appraisal business and I can assure you the real estate market is not doing worth a damn here either. Today, I am going to have to put my nose to the grindstone to keep alive for another month. I have a whole host of things to do today and unfortunately I am beginning to feel like that Fat Hairy Bastard in Texas.
A bright side is that Glenda Griffith invited us over last night and cooked a wonderful steak and Denise made a cake.
Thanks to the people on Facebook that wished me Happy Birthday and hope that I can get a few minutes to relax later today.

Friday, March 06, 2009

North To Alaska

I have not heard from my friend Eric in a while, but he is still in the outer Othmar territory where it snows every day. He let his deer hunting blog lapse but incorporated everything into the
Bingorage Blog which mostly deals with Indian (Native American) and Eskimo art, etc.
He works at Broken Vulture Art and has wonderful pictures of his art work, a little of his 2008 deer hunting, and a wide variety of folklore stories, creative pics and projects. He seems always in good humor and his blog is very, very interesting.
Go see him, you might find something you like.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Fowl News

The latest link I am proud to receive is from John over at Acrylic Duck Calling. his blog basically reviews a lot of cold weather gear, outlines strategy for duck hunts and gushes over memorable hunts all over the world. John also has several good post on duck identification. Holly would like that. He has an about page that links a great number of manufacturers. At the end he has an online store to check out and purchase some great calls, etc. Go visit him and remember this is your chance to Kill More Ducks!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Hunting Giant Crows

Verne, MS> now that the great hog hunt is over, it is time to get serious about some of the other varmints at the famous Christmas Place. Up in the hills there is a large cave that you can not even go into because these large birds are always swooping around causing havoc. It is time to have an organized hunt to get rid of them once and for all. The locals call them Ropen but I think they are the so-called Thunderbirds of lore. Either way, I am tired of them barreling down out of the sky and snatching up my deer and turkeys. They are now also working on my hogs and are almost so fat they can't fly. Anyway, I hope to organize a hunt soon by staking out a scantily clad, beautiful maiden or two in the center of our wheat fields and blasting the evil birds as they swoop down to devour them. Leave a comment if you would like to be included in the hunt

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

A Little Snow

One of my fondest wishes is to be at the famous Christmas Place during a big snow. We only had a sprinkle last weekend but it was beautiful. Bryan and Burney Bryan got a rabbit! Hogs in snow

Monday, March 02, 2009

The Great Hog Hunt of 2009

Porksylvania, MS> I was ready to leave the office on friday and rushed to get out of here. Greg was not going but Kim and Kyle were following us down to camp. Her son Tyler had already left to meet Dad. When I got to camp, I found that Tyler Jones had already scored on a really nice hog to set the weekend on the right path. That night every one finally showed up and we ate drank, and visited. Dad, Bob and Marian were there, Paul and Michael, Me, Denise, Spencer and Erin, Burney showed up with Austin, Katie and her friend Zoey, Kim, Tyler and Kyle, Jones. Two of our neighbors (Chris and Bryan) were there for the great hunt too. We had a fun night as the drizzling rain washed the Christmas Place and went to bed ready to get after the hogs.
The next morning the cold wind and rain whipped us and to cut it short, we saw no hogs and only Denise and I heard hogs at the Elbow stand. That afternoon we regrouped and headed out. Things got interesting very quickly. Bryan and Michael started shooting first, I took my binoculars out and looked across the field just in time to see Kim blast one at the elbow. BLAM, BLAM, BLAM!! 15 to 20 shots out of that one area. Then I heard Kyle start blasting at the Point Stand.
Then Marian and Bob shot at the GameWarden Stand. I was like the Maytag repairman! Erin and I did not see one. When we got back to camp it was in a tizzy and then they started bringing in the hogs.
The Gator was full of hogs that night, and even though Bob missed, Kim, Bryan, Michael, and Kyle had blasted hogs until they were out of bullets! It was cold but we all gathered to get a drink and have a pic or two snapped of the mighty hog killers.

Burney had spent the day cooking a whole hog on the smoker and that night we had a fantastic dinner. We let the hogs hang in the cold weather as we gathered around the fire and listened to the stories of the hunt. It got late as we drank and talked and everyone went to bed exhausted. When we woke the next morning, the ground was covered in snow. We set up drives through the thick brush and even though it was exciting, we got no hogs. I guess those Joneses killed them all! Overall we got 6 wild hogs this past weekend. Here is a pic of the mighty hog hunters. Phillip would have burst a button with pride! What a great weekend! The first Annual Christmas Place Hog Hunt was a major success!