Every year at Halloween it was the same routine, Buzz would keep me guessin’ about what he was wearing and I would do the same to him. And every year he’d dress up like the Lone Ranger and I’d dress as Tonto. So this year I told Buzz that I was goin’ as Tonto – straight out like - and that totally confused him (as if anyone needed to work at that). He was goin’ real crazy wonderin’ if I was really gonna dress up as Tonto or if I was just double bluffin’ my best pal in the world. As if.
To be real honest, I had no idea what I was goin’ to be, the Tonto costume was real small and I had grown up a bit. The sleeves stopped at my elbows and I looked like Tonto, The Big Giant.
I asked Buzz what he was gonna wear and he said that I was to mind my own bees’ wax. I reckon that meant he didn’t know what he was wearing’ either.
One night, I kinda peeked thru’ Buzz’ window and there he was walking about the house in is Maw’s dress. I kid you not. I knocked the window and he sees me right after his face goes red, real deep red. He chases me down the street in the dress shoutin’ that him and his Maw are the same size and she uses him to sow her dresses up.
“Honest Injun.” When he shouted that I knew he was tellin’ the truth , cause we only say ‘honest injun’ in times of war or emergency. Still he had the whole town watchin’ him as he ran. Some unkind folks called him Elizabeth for a while but it was soon forgot.
I think I made my mind up during Math, one afternoon. I ain’t the countin’ type and I ain’t sure if I’ll ever have a need for countin’. As Buzz says and I have to agree with him – ‘countin’ is as countin’ does’. Don’t ask me what it means, but it sounds like it means somethin’, so I’m happy.
I decided I was gonna double bluff Buzz and I was gonna go as the Lone Ranger. I wanted to be a hero and anyhoo, my mother had bought me the costume and hid it in her bedroom. I only found it when I was being real nosey like.
I looked over at Buzz, in class, and he was drawing somethin’ or other with his tongue hangin’ loose with a life of its own, and his arm around the drawin’ so no one could see what he was doin’. Becky McAllister tried to see what it was thru' her spectacles that had been handed down thru’ her family. I don’t think she needed them and I guess it made her eyesight worse but it was the only thing her Grandmaw had left her and she liked to wear them.
“Miss - Buzz is drawin’ something and it ain’t countin’,” said Becky who always was a snitch up until the day she got arrested for makin’ hooch in her Grandmaw’s bath tub. She was wearin’ her Grandmaw’s old spectacles when she added the wrong stuff to the hooch and killed three folks, stone dead. She asked the Judge to take her Grandmaw’s spectacles into consideration, but he just said she was guilty as anyone he’d seen and was gonna hang. I guess snitches get what’s comin’ to them.
Anyway the Math teacher, grabbed the drawin’ from Buzz and threw it in the basket. I decided to try and get it out of the basket when we were leavin’ class. I stuck my hand in the basket and pulled out a clump of paper.
I said goodbye to Buzz and walked home. In fact I ran home ‘cause I was real excited to see what he was drawin’.
I got the wrong paper. It was a note by the teacher, she had written about herself – she was always tryin’ to get a boyfriend and she would put little adverts in Mrs Mulhoon’s store on Main street.
This one said “Nice looking lady, early 30s, seeks nice gentleman, no psychos.” I guess she didn’t like it too much on account she had thrown it in the basket.
So back to the story - you’ll never guess what Buzz turned up as on Halloween? He turned up as Tonto!
bobby stevenson 2013