Monday, July 24, 2017

Some Folks Have it Hard

     I just read a story, a story set in Florida — not the Florida of money. The locale of the story reminded me of an almost forgotten incident.
     Years ago I attended a feminist writing workshop in upstate New York. Forty-five women from fifteen states as well as one woman from Germany and one from Italy made their way to the workshop.
      Troy, drove a rusted and dented red pick-up truck up from Florida. She kept a loaded gun under the front seat, “ in case of any trouble.” The trouble came when one woman wrote and produced a play for our group and any locals who wished to attend the show.
     A gun prop was needed for a scene. Troy volunteered her gun— bullets removed. Unfortunately one of the locals was a policeman who recognized the gun as the real thing. Fortunately for Troy and our group she was given a chance to hand over the gun and forget about getting it back or deal with New York law . You can’t just wing your way through New York with a concealed weapon. 
     Troy surrendered the gun and then spent an evening damning the entire state for its attitude toward guns. She told us that she lived in a rustic cabin in an isolated area and kept a shotgun under her bed. If we believed everything she told us then she only hit the bull’s eye of a target and shot an alligator in a mangrove swamp. “ One crazed croc”
     “And that gun,” she said was a family heirloom. “ My mother could shoot a southern copperhead right through the head. Once near the Apalachicola River she shot two in one day.” No one accused Troy of hyperbole. 
     When we all drank wine and read our writing in the evening Troy drank whiskey. Before the two weeks were up she read a long short story about a young girl who didn’t fit into a community that , “ had no truck with that kind of craziness." 
    "Some kinds of loving," she said, " bothers people until they stomp it down."  


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