Armadillo Day: The Nine-banded Varmint and Me

Armadillo Day
The Nine-banded Varmint and Me
Ryan E Felton


          “What is your ‘Medieval Times?’”
          This question, posited by my friend Jessica at dinner, was tantamount to asking, “What would make your inner child happiest?” She’d just returned from a trip to that serf-and-sword-themed mega-restaurant, fulfilling a heretofore unrequited wish of her youth. It was, she said, all she’d dreamed it would be. I myself have never been, but based on her description I now envision a sort of heaven on Earth when I think of it, something like Disneyland dialed up to 11 on the giddy meter.
          Jess wanted her friends – at present, me and fellow diner Matt – to experience the same euphoria of realizing an old unsettled dream. She asked us what would be our equivalent experience. What would be our “Medieval Times?”
          My answer was reflexive.
          “Armadillo,” I said.
          There could be nothing else.
          “All I want is to see a nine-banded armadillo.” Continue reading “Armadillo Day: The Nine-banded Varmint and Me”

The Humble Derby

The Humble Derby

Ryan Everett Felton

          Tammy Reuben’s cowboy hat was too big for her head, but to her mind this had a slimming effect and so she kept it on – although it impeded her vision while exploring the fairgrounds. Half-blinded, she bumped into a dozen folks on her way to the event tents. So friendly were the denizens of Humble that both parties apologized in each instance, usually to the point of profusion.
“‘Scuse me. Sorry!” she said, knocking a man’s plate of funnel cake out of his hand. He echoed her sentiment, but by then she was pushing through the ensuing powdered sugar cloud. She crossed into a large candy-striped tent and edged her way to the front of a small mob. It was hot, a scorching Texas summer morning, and none present could deny their contribution to the stink of the tent interior. Waist-high metal fencing cordoned off the center of the space, where a wooden mini-maze had been erected. Above this set-up flapped a banner with the spray-painted message:
          13th ANNUAL HUMBLE DERBY
           (Armadillo Races)
Continue reading “The Humble Derby”