Armageddon Okies - part I

Pretty True Stories by Gary Busselman


#1 Letter from Home

Runnin with the Dogs

Dear Randy,

Thanks for the intro. Lots of good advice on this net thing. My friend Lee told me that he used to have to get up to pass water 2 or 3 times every night until he started to drink cranberry juice, now he says he doesn't get up at all. So I thought, "what the heck!" I'll try it. By golly it does work. I've been drinking cranberry juice for about 2 weeks now and the last 3 nights I didn't get up at all to go to the bathroom. I still go to the bathroom, I just don't get up. I sleep faster and can get an earlier start in service. Hit the first door at 5:00 AM this morning. Been noticing a lot of not-at-homes. Sure will be glad to get these retirement condos worked.

I've got to go for now. I hear the dogs barking. They've been running in a pack about 2 weeks now.....ever since we quit feeding them. Last week they got the mailman. This afternoon the UPS man tossed out Egor's test tube shipment in the yard. I guess he didn't want to get out of the truck after what happened last time. They all busted except the one with the shrunken head in it. I guess kids need a safe hobby. He tried stamp collecting but they kept sticking to the roof of his mouth. Watchtower brought out some new ideas for family fun a while back. We are going to try them all. We've decided on tennis and we all are anxious for enough bats to get here so we can all play.

That letter with your check in it came back for the third time this month marked "return for postage". We're gonna try it from Iowa next week when Maw goes in for her check-up. We're gonna circle your name in red this time. Sis had another near miss with that relationship thing. She keeps picking out the guys who won't wear ties to the Hall. We keep telling her. Maybe she doesn't notice....she's so short.

Well that's it . I've got to go for sure now. I just heard Bubba's truck pull in. He's been over working on the Circuit Servant's Buick at Mel's again. Now they can't get that sticky stuff off the seats. Loaned him my green Studebaker last month when he went back up to the brambles to look for his wife. Lonnie couldn't exactly make out what it was she was yelling as she ran up that hill. We trailed her for about 3 or 4 miles with the dogs until she ran out of invitations. Dogs feet were all cut up from the rocks.

Don't forget to write.

Love, Gary B.

PS; We had little LeRoy out of the home for a visit and now we can't remember where we hid all the knives.



#2 Letter from Home

A Good Day In Service

Dear Randy,

Boy did we have a day! It got real cold up here again last night and right before chores this morning we got a call from Lambert, that new guy I told you about that we are studying with. He's the red headed son of too fat Pat, the fill in school cook and coach Dean...we think. Anyway, Lambert calls us and his pump is froze up again. So me and Maw load up all the tools in the Dodge and head over there. We put old magazines on 3 porches on the way over there so we could get our time started. Well, we got the pump started while Lambert was in the house eating breakfast so me and Maw headed home to do chores. Wouldn't you know, when we got home our pump was froze up too. We called Lambert to see if he would come over and help us but no answer. Guess He already left for service.

We didn't catch up with the group out in service until their break at 7:30 AM at the Hefty Donut Shop. The fill in circuit servant Rusty Fenders is here this week and since we wanted to make a good impression on him we drove the Edsel. After coffee we split up in smaller car groups. Maw and I had brother Fenders and too tall Tom's two twins, little Roy and one eared Sam with us. We went into deep rural territory. Looking back on it I think that probably was a mistake. Brother Fenders had eaten supper last night over at the Billows' and had two helpings of sister Billows prune pie for desert. At the second not-at-home Fenders excused himself to check out the barn. Roy and Sam snuck in the next manger and just at the right time they slid a scoop shovel under the rail behind brother Fenders. When he finished they slid the shovel with the trophy in it back to their side. Now brother Fenders knows he did something but when he looks....there's nothing there. He checks in his pants and his coat but he can't find any evidence at all. Little Roy and Sam beat him back to the car and when he gets back we all sniff in the air. It was hard to keep a straight face after that.

We did real good in service. We got 14 hours in today counting the ambulance ride. We got a new company servant last month, brother Richard Noze. He was going to Bethel but changed his mind when he heard that he would have to ride in subways. He has been real good at sticking up for the sisters anyway.

Well, got to go now. I just heard Bubba's pickup backfire down the lane. That means he checked the mailbox on his way by. I've got to prepare my lesson for the book study. It should go better now. Maw bought me three new red ball tip pens. The study was moved 2 weeks age to brother Newly Ben Haad's trailer since he has a six piece dinette set and a park bench. Now most of us can sit.

Love from all. Write when you get time,

Gary B.

PS. Have you seen that gray kitten? I seem to remember LeRoy putting it in the glovebox of your car last time you were here.



#3 Letter from Home

Dadburned Critters!

Dear Randy,

Boy, did we ever have a commotion here Wednesday night. Maw and I were in the kitchen varnishing Granny's rocking chair that got rain damaged from sitting outside Monday and Tuesday night. The seat and one arm-rest are OK. The rest got really wet. It really almost would have been better if she had slumped straight forward. The doctor said she should be out of the hospital next week. Anyway we heard this terrible noise from out back. Well here the dogs had got some dad blamed raccoons chased up under the back porch. We messed around there with those coons till after seven o'clock. Finally Bubba got home from the elders meeting. Seems sister Neew's skirts are fine until she bends over to pick up her bag off the floor, but at that point there seems to be several issues that come up. I guess they called her to come in so they could check into the matter a little closer.

Now didn't I tell you Bubba's smart? By golly, he didn't go clear through the seventh grade for nothin. He said we should just toss last week's dirty laundry under there. Boy, he was right. When we went back to check, the raccoons were gone but now there were 2 skunks under there. Lucky I remembered that last weekend we were up to the circuit assembly in Clinton and had brought back a sack of left-over sandwiches from the refreshment stand. Maw and Bubba tossed those babies up under the porch while I rattled the can barrel on the other end. Thursday morning the skunks were gone, but now we can't figure out how to get those sandwiches out of there.

We had a good time at the circuit assembly anyway. We had a big crowd Sunday. Too bad it was so hot in there. We bought extra songbooks so seats and fans shouldn't have been a problem but we were one short and by the time I got the fender pounded back away from the wheel of the Ford the only seat left was between sister Stout and sister Rank. Now I got in there all right but when it came time for the song after brother Fenders talk we couldn't get up. Finally brother Newly Ben Haad rolled up a Watchdog Magazine and worked it down between sister Stout and the chair back and that broke the vacuum.

Well, I've got to go now. I hear the dogs barking and I bet that is the fill in circuit servant, brother Rusty Fenders coming to visit. When he was here last week I gave him a sip of the home-make elderberry wine I made last month that I spiked with 6 quarts of gin. He said that it was the best wine he ever tasted so I invited him to come back and try it when he had a little more time.

Love from all, write when you get time.

Gary B.

PS: The doctor said LeRoy could try another girlfriend, but he's related to all the girls here. Are there any single sisters up there that he could write to? I think his intentions would be honorable....not too smart, but honorable.



#4 Letter from Home

New Kingdom Hall

Dear Randy,

Well, do we ever have exciting news this week. We are going to be building a new Kingdom Hall up here. We think we can do most of the work ourselves. Some of the newer ones are really excited about it. Maw was kind of against it at first until she heard that there would be inside toilets. Several of the single sisters aren't too happy about it. Sister Neew especially has been sore since that last elders meeting. We decided to cut the lumber ourselves on Mel's buzz saw. Bubba's out in the shed welding a trailer hitch on the Lincoln right now.

Sunday night we went over to Clinton to see brother Widely's slides of their trip to the New York assembly. Boy was that something! All those tents! Afterwards instead of a speaker we listened to phonograph records of Judge Rutherford's talk, Religion! What a guy! You can sure tell he's a Judge. On the way home Bubba missed the county line correction curve again.

Yesterday Maw sure got a surprise. When she went to call the dogs off the meter reader she noticed that one of them isn't a dog. It's a pig. He's been with those dogs for so long that he thinks he's a dog. Even sleeps in the dog-house. Now what sister Billows was saying makes more sense.

Bubba has come up with a way to pioneer and work full time. On his magazine route he noticed that some days he almost followed the garbage truck so he applied for the job of driver and got it. Every third week he will have to fill in on the septic pumping truck but he says that won't be a problem. He says he doesn't mind working in the rich neighborhoods. Now he just picks up the garbage and leaves the magazines in one trip and gets paid for it while he counts time. He's really happy. Yesterday he got in 16 hours.

Well, I've got to go, sis has a new boyfriend, widow Loyal's third son, Ben, from her fourth husband, Hazz-Ben. He just got out of prison again. I think he'll look better when his hair grown back out a little. He meets with the draft board again next Thursday. Boy, this persecution is really getting bad. I told her that he could work with me and little Mike until his trial. It's amazing how much people change in 5 years isn't it? I just heard the Lincoln start up, those straight pipes sound nice, so I guess Bubba's got the trailer all hooked up and ready to give us a test ride. I told him to take about half of those rocks out of the trunk to allow for the weight of me and Maw in the trailer. I hope he doesn't take the creek road again like he did last time. If he does, I hope he ties the lawn chairs down better this time. Maw hates walking after dark.

Love from all, write when you get time.

Gary B.

PS: We put LeRoy on the bus to spend two weeks with you yesterday. Hope this letter beats him there.



#5 Letter from Home

Diggin the Well

Dear Randy,

Well the work on the new Hall is going good. The society has even agreed to loan us our money back at no interest if we promise to pay it back to them and deed the new Hall over to them. This will be a big encouragement to the brothers. Old Pete and limp leg Mort didn't think the Society would help us out. Boy do they look stupid now! It's times like this that I know for sure we have the truth. The only bad thing was when brother Richard Noze was telling the congregation about it Thursday night he got one of those surprise vomit burps that your Maw gets so much in service. Well, he kept going on but you could tell that it was a real burner. He finally choked it back down just as he was finishing. You can see why we respect him so much.

Sister Neew's second cousin twice removed who lives up by Cincinnati got the yellow bowel storms and died last week. Sister Neew asked for a shepherding call from the elders and Bubba and brother Noze won the toss. Bubba got home at two AM. Said sister Neew was dually comforted.

They really had a commotion up there Tuesday morning. They need to decide where they'll dig the water well before they can dig the footings for the Hall. So far they had three elder meetings on it and three dry holes so Newly says let's get Fish Bait McLeery to witch it. Well they been trying to sober him up ever since. Finally they got him so he could stand and he walked that lot four times with that witchin willow stick but no water. Now they waited till after dark then had him walk on Herman Grump's side of the road and wouldn't you know there is water all over the place there. Only one problem, Herman Grump has been really mad at the truth ever since we picketed his church with the racket posters the Sunday of his daughter's wedding. Wouldn't you know Grump can kind of see somebody out in his field and with all the dogs barking and all he fires that shotgun up in the air and those pellets come raining down on the elders and old Fish Bait. Now they've got the one eyed Cline boy from the Boney Creek congregation and his dwarf son-in-law with the well drilling rig trying to drill an angle hole under the road to get some of Grump's water for the Hall.

Well, I've got to go now. Bubba is coming in for supper. I see the last fire truck just pulling out. Oh boy, that was quite a fire. Maw took a lot of pictures. We'll send some along with the next letter.

Love from all, write when you can.

Gary B.

PS: LeRoy wants to know if you can send him any of those pretty neck ties, you know the wide ones, he's making a parachute.

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