Life in the Shadows

Although Minister Westminster acknowledges his position as the leader of the Church of the Lost Sheep, he feels uncomfortable when people call him “your wooliness,” and refuses to carry the shepherd’s crook he received as a birthday present.

Mayor Chibble and Nippy Keene have agreed to terms for the establishment of a cemetery near Buckstone Field in Amishtown, for which Mr. Keene will donate two acres containing 13 trees, one boulder, several fence posts, and a substantial blackberry patch. Mayor Chibble has contacted the Heaven’s Gate Cemetery Entrance Company, Lombard, Ohio, and expects a quote within the week.

Amanda Ballard reports that she gave blood in Castor and received a postcard in the mail three weeks later saying that her donation went to a person in San Francisco. She says she’ll never give blood again.

Cleb Bowman has decided not to plant a garden this year and wishes the public to know they are welcome to use his bamboo tomato stakes, but it’s only a loan.

Doc Ghesslet wishes it known that he has never given the Angel’s Rest Funeral Home the names of terminally ill patients, which would be insider trading. How do these rumors begin? Curly?

Chap Gharrity, Fainburn Hotel, asks that patrons not lay firearms on the beds. He says he’s had to replace two bedspreads this month because of oil stains.

Bud Vernon says the best job he had ever was working as a seeing-eye person for a rich family’s blind dog.

“Whoever said it rained on the just as well as on the unjust was no fool,” says Garton Purby. “Here I am, trying to live a righteous life, forced to toast bread in the oven, while I know of an atheist with a four-slice toaster, a mortar and pestle, and not a care in the world.”

Freese’s Market sold 27 jars of dill pickles last Saturday evening. “Is there something I don’t know?” Oliver Freese asks.

Charlene Rapp says she’d like to move to a big city because she’s weary of living in a “rubeville,” where no one looks beyond the valley and one, “can’t have a yeast infection without receiving a dozen get-well cards in the mail.” The universe is a vast place, Charlene, and the difference between a cosmopolite and a sheltered Shadower is too insignificant to matter. Leave your feet where they are and expand your mind.

Amos Finch wants to know, “Who appointed Wetzel the sage of the Shadows?”

When no one attended Jasper Sapwood’s funeral in 1982, several concerned citizens formed the Sycamore Shadows Bereavement Committee, an organization composed of six rotating members who pledged to attend the funeral of any person who died friendless and kinless. I have served on the committee several times and have been to four such funerals. I doubt if it helps the deceased, but it sure does work wonders on the members, most of whom rush home from the funeral to phone siblings and cousins that they haven’t talked to in years.

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