It’s 1980: We’ve got a new decade


I’M SCARED a little. The big things in my life have nearly all seemed to take place in these even numbered years. I was born in 1920, got my first guitar in 1930, I dropped out of college in 1940, got married and returned to school in 1950, then got a little off schedule and moved to Alabama in 1961. It was in 1970 that the Red Bay News came of age by moving to the building where it is now located. So, what can I expect from 1980? I just hope it’s no worse than any of the above things; but I’m afraid I’ll get what I deserve one of these decades. Maybe I’ve already had my big event, though. My son finished college last week. That’s close enough. Now we can have all those things we’ve promised ourselves “when our son gets out of college.”


LET US NOW turn to some of the grave problems in the realm of gumstump philosophy. The essence of that science, as I’ve often told you, is to embrace the truth wherever and whenever we come across it. With those facts in mind, our Cushing, Okla., correspondent, T. C. (Doc) Bonner, has possibly shed some oblique light on the matter of why an old hound dog trots with his hind quarters slewed sideways. He is of the opinion that he does so to throw his body functions out of gear in order to comply with the environmental protection laws. He so stated in his column in the Cushing Daily Citizen, which he graciously sends to me. That does seem a logical explanation, but he overlooked one fact. Hound dogs were trotting catycornered long before the Washington eggheads dreamed up those laws. Let us still consider this matter under investigation by our panel of gum-stump scientists, of which YOU are one, unless you just wandered into this corner by accident.


THE WEIGHTY MATTER above (although hound dogs aren’t as weighty as St. Bernards) is not the only matter under study, by far. We have, for instance, the matter of “How can you get horned by a muley cow?” Then, there’s, “How do you squeeze toothpaste back into the tube?” Other such weighty matters might include, “Why’s a • blackberry red when it’s green?” “Where does your lap go when you stand up?” and “How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?”


I’M HAPPY I said something about a woodchuck, there. Otherwise I might have run that line of thought into the ground. But the word, woodchuck, reminded me it will soon be Groundhog Day. At that time, we’ll be shown once and for all if the bad winter weather is over or not. I’ve forgotten. Did we predict a bad or good Winter last Fall? Maybe it’s just as well I did. Whatever the groundhog tells us, we can say, “I told you so!” with a clear conscience.

I’ve had enough of this if you have. See ya,

This edition of Archway was originally published January 2, 1980. Archie Lee was editor and publisher of The Red Bay News from 1963-1984.