LNH: Alt.stralian Yarns #1: On the Matter of Locks

Tarq mitchell_crouch at caladrius.com.au
Mon Oct 16 08:28:52 PDT 2006

On the Matter of Locks
by Mitchell Crouch

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man looked up from the piece of paper he
held in his grubby hands. He looked from City Slicker Gent to his
missus and back again.

He sighed, and looked back down to the family tree. "Fird cousins ya
reckon, mate?"

"Yes. See, if you follow your Uncle
Uncle-of-Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man's roots back to - "

"Yeah, yeah," BOBFWTL Man waved a hand dismissively. "I'm not stupid."

In truth, Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man hadn't read a thing on the
sheet, and nor did he care to. If this bloke wanted to be his family,
sure, why not? As long as he dropped the arrogant attitude after a
while, he was sure they'd get along fine.

"S'pose ya wanna see round the farm, then?"

City Slicker Gent looked to his missus, who offered a smile and a small
nod. City Slicker Gent relayed the nod onto
Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man, and replied, "Sure. Why not?"

~ * ~

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man trudged over the hill, and looked
out over his favourite herd of steers. These were the ones that got him
through the hard times - the real hard times.

"Come up 'ere, mate," he called to his third cousin and his missus.
"You'll wanna take a good sticky at these beauties."

The Gent and his missus exchanged worried, exhausted glances. They were
both red in the face, and their formal attire was ill suited for
tramping through patty-infested fields.

When they reached the peak of the hill, the missus sat down for a bit
of a break, and City Slicker Gent joined Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long
Man at looking at the cattle.

"Bloody beautiful, mate," Been-Out-Bush muttered, awestruck.

His cousin frowned. "Uuh... yeah. Sure."

There was a silence.

"You don't get why they're so good, do ya, mate?"

"No, not really. Not at all, actually, now that you mention it. I mean
- " City Slicker Gent was cut off by a hushing signal from the
farmer, who then proceeded to point at a plover swooping down onto the

One of the steers looked up, and, suddenly and without warning, shot a
pair of gosh darn lasers from its eyes, blowing the cow pie out of the
witless bird.

"Great Scott!" exclaimed City Slicker Gent, jumping back. "What in the
- ?! How did it - ?!"

"Yep." Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man nodded approvingly.
"Supersteer. Got superbeef in 'em. Export it all to them Legion of
Net.whatsies, o'er in the States. Says it's good for them powers, they

Meanwhile, the missus was chuckin' a ninny.

She ran down to City Slicker Gent, and whispered urgently in his ear,
"Johann! Johann!"

"Missus, did you see that - ?!"

"Yes, Johann, I saw - and now I desperately need to know, does this
idiot redneck have a toilet?"

City Slicker Gent paused, and turned to the beaming Been-Out-Bush.
"Uuh, cousin? I don't suppose you've got a lady's room nearby?"

BOBFWTL Man's face fell. "A what?"

Gent quietly explained the situation to him.

"Oh. Oh, right. A dunny." He pointed to a small outhouse, back near the
residence. "Guess it's time to head back in now, huh?"

The missus rushed ahead, while Been-Out-Bush-For-Too-Long Man and City
Slicker Gent took their time, discussing the incredible cattle on the
way. When they were almost back to the three houses (residence,
kitchen, and outhouse), a shriek from the dunny preceded the missus as
she came streaking down the hill (by which I mean she ran quickly, not
ran naked ~ Ed.).

"Johann," she gasped, "Johann. There's a _redback_ in the toilet. A
redback _spider_."

Not wanting to appear impolite to their guest, he turned the missus
away for a bit and whispered to her, "Come on, dear, just go quickly,
and I'm sure it won't bite - "

"Johann, the toilet doesn't even have a lock!"

A polite as Gent wanted to be, he could see that his missus was quite
disturbed by the events, so he turned to Been-Out-Bush and said, "Now,
look here, cousin. I don't mean to be rude, by my missus here says that
you don't even have a lock on your john."

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man frowned. "A lock?" He scratched his
chin absently. "Look, mate, I'll be honest with ya - in the hundred
or so years my family's been working out here, we only had the drum
stolen three times. Twice it wasn't even full."

Post-Script -
For those bogged down with the stereotypical Alt.stralian outhouse
being a hole in the ground, I need you to realise for a second that the
country round these parts is very rocky, and thus
Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man's toilet is an old oil drum with a
tractor tyre for comfort.

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man, City Slicker Gent and his missus
created by me (and yes, I do have a vague story planned for this, and
I'm not just typing nonsense ;) )

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