Deer Oh Dear By Penny Hunter

Two hundred and twenty pounds of determined Buck leaped into the air, missed clearing the wire fence and slammed onto the ground just ten feet in front of me. I leaned over the carcass on the ground as it lay with all four limbs splayed out flat and said, "Honey, you tripped on the top wire."

My husband, "Buck", is an avid sportsman. He can drop everything and be ready for a hunting trip, last minute, faster then super glue can stick or my name’s not Penny Hunter. In our twenty-nine years of hunting together I have never ceased to be amazed at his enthusiasm or his deft ability at one-track thinking.

Buck relates and registers almost everything in terms of "the hunt". In our early years together this was a serious difficulty. I insisted that he purpose to me a second time. The first time was a memorable occasion after we had been seeing each other awhile. It was a beautiful night, he took my hand in the moonlight, dropped to one knee and said, "Penny, I really need a gun backup and I’d like it to be you."

He surprised me at the wedding by having delivered to the church that morning fifteen baskets of bulrushes and cattails to help decorate. He and his groomsmen showed up in formal black tuxes with camouflage lapels and wearing Gortex boots.

Oh, Buck is resourceful. He manages to infuse a sportsman’s flare into just about anything. I asked him once to build some kind of organizing divisions for the closet of our two young sons. After sometime I went to survey the finished project.  Buck had a rack nailed to the back wall of the closet. Each pair of the boys pants were rolled onto a wooden dowel standing upright and resting in felt covered grooves.

The shirts were folded into tiny squares and stuffed individually into multiple ten inch cubbyholes attached to the inside of the closet door. I found their socks, one pair each, inside glass jars screwed into lids that were nailed to the closet shelf, and hanging from the ceiling were four fishing stringers. From the individual loop of each was hanging a single pair of underwear.

Through the years, however, I have learned to use this condition to my, ah... favor. (I was going to say "advantage" but I knew I would loose half of you to image drifting) I can get Buck’s attention by relaying things to him in terms he can relate to:  "Buck,  I'm having a hard time this week emotionally.  It's like I've got a clean bow shot at twelve yards, I'm holding  a sixty-five pound compound at full draw and that eighteen point Pope & Young buck is looking right at me.  Could you help ease the tension up by watching the kids for awhile so they don't distract me?"

Of course it also works to point and yell "DEER!", when I want his immediate attention.

Sure, sometimes it takes some imagination to live with a die-hard hunter but usually I manage.  "Hey, Buck!" "The air in hear is thicker then sitting directly in the sun on the edge of a swale, watching the swamp at sundown with three layers of Duofold, Thinsulate, and Gortex, and breathing through a camo face net.  Can you get the screens put up and could we think about air conditioning?"