Slim Randles' Home Country
Lost under the sawdust
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It's a rare treat to have old Jasper Blankenship come
down from the diggin's to stock up on supplies. And this bright
morning he favored us with stories over coffee at the Mule Barn,
"Well, Doc," Jasper said, "you're right. I wasn't always a
miner. Back during The War I had a job in the city at one of the big
war plants, you know. I was a security guard and watched the gate.
"In those days, there was this one carpenter who just gave me the
fits. He'd come out the gate at the end of the day with a
wheelbarrow full of sawdust. I always stopped him and poked around
in the sawdust and never found anything, but I just knew he was
Jasper took a sip of coffee. "Well sir,
four-five years ago I was wetting my whistle up north a ways and
this guy walked in and I knew him from somewhere, so I struck up a
conversation with him. Turns out he was this same carpenter guy who
was wheeling that dang sawdust out the gate every afternoon. I knew
this was my chance, as so many years had gone by since we both
[to top of second
"I told him I always knew he was stealing from the plant but
could never find it in all that sawdust. I said it was a long time
ago, so would he mind 'fessing up to it, just to satisfy my mind?
"He just grinned at me. So I got another round for us, and he
seemed friendlier then. So I tried again. 'Come on, pardner,' I
said, 'I know you were stealing something there. What was it?'"
Jasper grinned. "He smiled at me and said, 'Wheelbarrows.'"
[Text from file received from Slim Randles]
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