Dud was awfully quiet all through the daily dissemination of anything on page one of the Valley Weekly Miracle, which wasn’t like him at all. Just sucked down caffeine and silently shook his head now and then.
“Anita okay, Dud?”
“Oh … sure, Doc.”
He nodded, then looked up with a wistful, philosophical look that our guys don’t usually get until after the buttered toast. “Sometimes,” he said, “I think it’s pearls before swine, that’s all.”
“Music, I mean. You know how you practice and practice and then you get good enough to actually do something? Well, I took the accordion and went to the accordion festival to compete … well, you know I’m not really that bad any more…”
“You’re getting pretty darn good on that thing, Dud.”
“Thanks, Steve. Well, we drove down to the capital and I got in the competition and did okay. Placed third in polka. I played that new piece. It’s kinda hard because it has those minor bass buttons in it and it took me forever to learn not to miss them.
“It was after that. You see, I put the accordion back in the car and we went in for a lunch they gave everyone.”
“What’s wrong with that?”
“I forgot to lock the car. We were halfway through lunch when Anita asked me if I’d locked the car and then it hit me that I might not have locked it. She insisted I run right out and check and that’s what I did. And that’s when I lost my faith in human beings.”
“Oh, Dud,” Doc said, “someone stole your accordion?”
“No, it was still there in the back seat. But someone had put two more in there with it.”
He shook his head. “Pearls before swine.”
Fans of the late Max Evans should check out Ol’ Max Evans’ letters to Jim Bob Swafford and family at Amazon.com. Jim Bob is Max’s cousin.