1. Don't look at this post if you don't want to see dead animals today. Oops, too late.
2. Don't look at this post if you think Bambi was the best Disney movie ever made
3. Don't look at this post if in your little world animal slaughter and back porches never coexist
4. What you're about to read is the brutal honest truth as best as it can be explained and embellished by me, the very biased onlooker.
5. I warned you.
DEER SEASON!!!! While Luke and Caleb didn't get to go hunting with Daddy this year, they tried to soak in all the knowledge and experience they could watching Uncle BJ and Papa prepare the carcasses.
The cold, hard truth is that, evidently, after you shoot a deer you have to hang it upside down for a while to let all the blood drain out. There's nothing Redneck about shooting a wild animal and letting it drain. People all over the world do that. And I've never heard of someone in Timbuktu, being called a Redneck.
However, shooting animals and letting them drain next to your back porch in town is something reserved for the few among us who retain and embrace the Redneck mantle.
This is not strange. This is not weird. This is not illegal.
It's highly convenient and handy. And it's much easier to pull your friends outside to look at your catch(?) when they stop in for hot chocolate. You don't have to trudge out to some barn somewhere and let the 9 degree frigid air chill your bones. Nope, you can just come to the back door and look out the window.
Contrary to what the photo may portray this was not an enormously bountiful deer season. To my brothers' chagrin, you'll notice none of the deer in the above picture have antlers. But this was the end of the season. All season long the boys were "waiting for the big one", but by mid-December you just gotta shoot what comes along, because you're almost out of time. And no true Redneck wants to contemplate what a whole year of life would look like without homemade, homegrown, homedried deer jerky!
Now hanging up a deer is a tricky thing all of it's own accord. Something Luke and Caleb will remember all their lives.
First, ya gotta use this heavy-duty metal hanger contraption and literally jab it through the back legs of the dear. I know, it looks really painful. But I swear, the deer can't feel a thing! Then you attach the hanger to some kind of pully-rope combination. Then you tie that rope up. Not to the tree your deer is hanging in, but rather to Mom's apple tree that she got from Dad on the occasion of her 25th Anniversary.
But there comes a time in the life of all productive Redneckers when there's just no longer enough room in the tree to hang up all the deer. Never fear, if you're fortunate enough to reach that point, you proudly hang your deer on the porch itself! Okay, I think it might actually be a deck. It doesn't have a roof.
And if the deck isn't quite tall enough, the deer's not gonna mind if her face drags on the floor a little. You won't hear any complaints at all. And no, we don't eat the face! So it's not like we're gonna eat dirt or anything!!!
Then after all the deer have been properly hanged. (Wait, I think in this context it would be hung, because they were already dead before they got up there.) Anyway, after you've hung your deer, if you're a true Redneck you won't retreat inside to your nice warm recliner. Nope. This is when you start talking about the hunt.
If I remember correctly, this is where Uncle BJ said, "Yep, Dad, it went in right here. . . .
And came out over here. Huh! I'm just glad . . ."
And then I sort of tuned out because while I can sit here at my computer and type this whole post without a glitch in my fingers, actually thinking about animals walking around then not walking around all of a sudden really starts to bother me. I do much better to just think of them as dead. Let's not talk about them when they were alive. And that now they're dead, but they weren't dead before. And how they were all mama deers. Oh, good grief!!
I know. I've got a ways to go before the cloak of Redneck-ness actually fits. But I'm working on it. One post at a time. . . .
Oh, the thrill of the hunt.
We can all be thankful that I was not present when they skinned the deer. Evidently in Redneck Reality it involves attaching the hide of the deer to the back of a pick up truck and then stepping on the gas. I'll try to get those pics for you next year!