Slow Moe and Mandy

Rick Ryckeley's picture

Tim Morowski lived two doors up from Old Mrs. Crabtree at the end of Flamingo Street and was the slowest person I knew. We all called him Slow Moe for short, but he wasn’t dumb.

Nope, on the contrary, Slow Moe was the smartest kid in Mrs. Crabtree’s fifth grade class. He was just slow, that’s all. He talked slowly, he walked slowly, and he even chewed his food slowly. Okay, bad example, but you get the point. Slow Moe was really slow.

Mandy was also slow, but she wasn’t in Mrs. Crabtree’s class. Well, except that one time she got out of her pen and followed Moe to school. That was the first time I ever saw a pig at Mt. Olive Elementary.

I’ll never forget the expression on Mrs. Crabtree’s face when Mandy came squealing through her door, waddled over, and licked her right on the foot. The entire class screamed with laughter. Mrs. Crabtree screamed too, but she wasn’t laughing.

When Slow Moe finally caught the happy squealing intruder, she had already turned over two desks and tried to bite Bully Brad on the foot.

Mandy was one smart pig. Moe and his pig were both sent home for the rest of the day. Mrs. Crabtree went home also. Said she wasn’t feeling well. We had a substitute teacher for the rest of the week. Guess having a pig in school wasn’t so bad after all.

As pot-bellied pigs go, Mandy was really cool. She had short, black, wire-like hair, and one ear that looked as if it had been dipped in black paint – the other one in white.

Wherever Moe went, Mandy followed with both ears bouncing up and down as she waddled behind him. She’d squeal if he went too fast till he slowed down. Guess if I had a squealing, pot-bellied pig behind me nipping at my ankles, I’d be slow too.

Mandy and Moe were seldom seen apart. It wasn’t long before we all thought that a pig following you was as natural as having a dog following you around — or a little brother. And trust me, the way Twin Brother Mark kept his side of our bedroom, living with a pig would’ve been cleaner.

Slow Moe put a leash on Mandy and walked her down to the DQ every Saturday, come rain or shine. On sunny days the trip took them a little bit longer than an hour to traverse the front lawns on Flamingo Street, cross over Beacher Hills Drive, and then finally to the Dairy Queen at the center of town.

Now Mandy, being a pig, liked it better when it rained during their trip. Every large puddle she came to she would squeal until Slow Moe let her off her leash so she could wallow in it. A little brother you can’t keep on a leash either. I know; I’ve tried. They squeal too much.

Mandy was the smartest pig on all of Flamingo Street. Maybe that’s why she was standoffish whenever Bubba Hanks was around. Guess she though he’d eat her or something. Like I said, Mandy was one smart pig.

One day Goofy Steve thought he could get Mandy to fetch and threw a stick in front of her. Of course she just looked at him through little pink, pudgy eyes and headed for her mud hole for her afternoon wallow.

Moe said that’s what she did when she got all stressed out. Something about rolling around in a mud hole seemed to make her feel happy. Afterwards she’d climb out, lie in the sun to dry, and then go to sleep.

Being all stressed out is something I’m an expert on right now. College tuition had to be paid last month, we sold our house in two weeks and had to move in five days, we’ve started to build our dream house, and just last week a deer jumped out and hit The Boy’s truck, causing him to wreck.

Now I know what you’re first reaction is — it was mine too. But don’t worry. The truck’s gonna be okay. The stray deer only cause $1,600 dollars worth of damage. After an in-depth police investigation, it was found that the deer was not on a leash.

The Wife says I’m too stressed; we need to go on a vacation. She suggested Asheville, N.C., and a week’s stay at the Grove Park Inn. I told her that vacations were too expensive; I’d never be able to relax spending all that money. I think I’ll just find a mud hole in the backyard and wallow around in it, lay out in the sun to dry, and then go to sleep.

To my surprise, The Wife agreed. She thought a mud bath was a great idea and started to pack. On our way to Asheville, she informed me that the Grove Park Inn has a world class spa famous for their mud baths at $250 an hour.

Now that’s some high-dollar wallowing.

login to post comments | Rick Ryckeley's blog