June 14, 2006
Funny Stories From Hunting Camp
By David E. Petzal and Phil Bourjaily
Coming in the October issue, we’ll be doing a special on deer camps. But we’re lacking an element. We need humor. Camp humor. Practical jokes. Tales of disgraceful behavior. Wretched mistakes. You know, all the good stuff that, if it were about you, you’d kill the guy who ratted you out.
Since we intend to print the best ones in the October issue, we will need your real name and e-mail address, and just to prime the pump, here is a favorite of mine, as told me 50 years ago in Maine by an old Maine Guide.
“We were deer hunting near the Dead River, and we had a guy in camp who was a real jerk and a drunk to boot. Never hunted, just boozed, never worked. And the booze screwed up his stomach, so he was in the outhouse all the time.
“Then one of the boys shot a black bear, and we got a bright idea. We kept the bear out of camp, and laid it out so that his legs stiffened straight. Then when our pal was sleeping one off we jammed the bear onto the seat in the outhouse with his stiff rear legs blocking the door from swinging inward, which was the way it opened.
“Then we waited. Sure enough, after a while the drunk wakes up, heads to the outhouse, and pushes the door.”
“'Oh, ‘scuze me,' he says.
“He paces for a while, then he raps on the door, hard.
“'Damn, get a move on,'" he says.
“But nothing happens.
“Finally he says ‘All right’ and gets a running start and crashes his shoulder against the door and gets his head inside. For a minute we didn’t hear anything, then real slowly he says ‘Oh…my…God.’ He comes back in the cabin, white as a sheet and never says anything or takes another drop for the rest of the hunt.
“We had to sneak the bear out of there and come back for it when he’d gone home, but it was worth it.”
That sort of stuff. This could be your 15 minutes of fame. Go to it.