|2/8/2014 2:28:00 PM|
Bambi steals show from Bubba
"Hey, this here's the social media operator trying to reach a Mr. Tim Timmons."
Oh, Lord. Social media operator? Really? Despite myself, I had to play along to see where this was going.
"This is him."
I heard a hand cover the mouthpiece of the phone and then a muffled, "Hey, he bought it. Shhhhh."
Why do I bother?
"Uh, we was just checking to see if you twitted today?"
There erupted a huge laugh on the other end of the phone. Then wheezing. Of course it was my old pal Bubba Castiron. Bubba is a self-proclaimed redneck living in a pastel world. He tends to call 'em as he sees 'em, even if he doesn't always understand 'em. Bubba usually calls from the Crawl-On-Inn, a hole-in-the-wall bar out in the netherlands of Hamilton County between Boxley, Omega and Elwood.
"Here, Timmons," Bubba wheezed, "I got to hand the phone to Bambi."
Bubba hangs out with a colorful crew. Tater, Big Country and Gumball are his closest pals. Elvis tends bar at the Crawl-On-Inn and Bambi, does the waitress duties, when she's not driving a truck.
"Twitted?" I asked. "I don't get it."
"Don't worry about it, hon," Bambi explained. "Bubba just thinks it's hilarious when someone says twitted."
I could hear more laughter in the background.
"Wow, sorry to hear that Bambi."
"Yeah well, not half as much as I am," she deadpanned. "Listen. Me and the old man decided to take a quick trip before the gas prices went over $5. But we got ripped off and I was thinking that maybe you ought to write a story or something about in that newspaper."
"Got ripped off? You mean buying the gas or on the trip?"
"Funny. We packed the truck and headed south. About halfway through Kentucky it was late and we were tired so we stopped at one of them real nice motels they got down there. We got us a room and planned on sleeping a little bit before we got back on the road. We only slept about four hours and then went to check out. The thing is, the clerk handed us a bill for $275."
"Timmons, would I kid you? Anyways, I got right in the face of that desk clerk and told the little pipsqueak that I wanted to speak to the manager. He more or less gathered himself all up as big as he could, which wasn't much, and told me he was the night manager. So I told him that there must be some mistake. The bill was too high.
"He assured me it was right so I asked for an itemized printout. There was the problem. They charged us for the pool they had out back. I told the guy that we didn't use the pool and do you know what he said?"
"He said, 'well, you could have.' And the next line showed a charge for their next-door restaurant. And we said we didn't eat there and do you know what he said?"
"He said, 'well, you could have.' And that's the way it went. There was a car-and-truck wash charge and there was a fax machine charge and there was even a charge for the laundromat. And every time I said that we didn't use any of that stuff, he'd just say, 'well, you could have.' "
I was shocked. "Bambi, that's just wrong. You were right for calling. We can definitely do something about this. At the very least we can warn people not to stop there."
"Good. I just want to make sure that what I did was OK before you go and print anything though."
"What'd you do, Bambi."
"Well, I got out the checkbook and wrote him a check for $75."
"But I thought you said the bill was for $275?"
"It was," she said. "He looked at the check and said, 'ma'am, this check is only for $75.' 'That's right, Junior,' I told him. 'I charged you $200 for me being your escort at dinner.' He started to complain that he didn't have dinner with me and I looked him straight in the eye and said, 'well, you could have.' "
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