Dad said later that it didn’t really look I wanted to catch that pig. Yeah. I didn’t want to catch that pig any more than the man in the moon. There I was backstage at the Abilene Wild Bill Hickok Rodeo, with a bunch of other 10-year-olds. We were being ushered past shoots and gates and into the arena along with a shoot full of greased pigs. How did I get here? I don’t remember how exactly, but as I’ve analyzed my life over the years, I see that with few important exceptions, I have followed the path of least resistance. So I imagine a conversation something like this between me and my parents. Them: You want to chase greased pigs at the rodeo? Me: I don’t know. Them: Sure you do! Me: Ok.
So there we were, being introduced. And there go the pigs, squealing madly, slicked down with lard, a herd of kids running after them. It took me no time at all to figure out that if I caught one of these things, I would have to grab and subdue the filthy thing and haul it to the pickup truck in the middle of the arena. Uh, no thanks.
I ran with a group of kids toward the pickup truck. Some of the pigs had run under the truck to hide. A couple kids had got a hold of a couple different pigs, one on one side of the truck, one on the other. The pigs were squealing like pigs do, sounding like their insides were being ripped out. I wanted none of this. I moved from one side of the truck to the other, acting like I was trying to reach a pig, but not quite able to do it. Darn it.
Finally one of the country kids, in his bright blue wranglers, white button up shirt and straw cowboy hat, dragged a screaming pig to base, winning the glory, and putting an end to the contest for the rest of us. Thank god.