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The Adventures of Furthermore, the Masonic Raven
Written by Skip Boyer



FURTHERMORE AND THE COW DECOYS

It may come as a surprise to you, but I have a younger sister. Itís true. Mom and Dad didnít just give up in disgust after I was born. A real tribute to the spirit of hope in the human species. Anyway, my sister, Barbara, lives in Wyoming where she is a lawyer. This is pretty much a great job. Only six people live in Wyoming and, apparently, they are all in litigation against each other at any given moment. Hence the need for at least one lawyeróand probably a great many more, knowing how lawyers breed.

I give you all this extraneous detail about my secret family life because it came up in discussion with Furthermore last night and Iím sure you wonít take undue advantage of the information. It seems that my sister, the lawyer, told me a story and I wanted to share it with Furthermore because I found it so amazing. My sister and I, by the way, are natives of Nebraska. I think this has some bearing on the story but Iím not entirely certain.

It seems, according to my sister, that the newspaper in Cheyenne, Wyoming, recently carried a story about hunters in that state. They, claimed the newspaper, have adopted a trick from the more inventive hunters in Nebraska.

If the story is to be believed, these hunters are all after snow geese. Iíd always thought snow geese were very beautiful birds. They are also, apparently, dumb as fruit salad. This is Furthermoreís observation and I see no reason to argue with it. So, it seems that snow geese have no fear of cows. Indeed, cows and snow geese seem to have some sort of friendly understanding. The geese wonít give milk and the cows wonít fly. Or something like that. Anyway, they get along and like to hang out together. Sort of a leather and feathers gang. Sounds a bit like a fetish, but we wonít go there. So, hunters have figured out that the way to sneak up on snow geese is to look like a cow. I know. It sounds incredible. Or incredibly dumb. Or whatever.

So, the hunters are disguising themselves as cows. Thatís what the newspaper story was all about. Wyoming hunters building life-sized cow decoys. There were pictures. Trust me. Iím your Brother.

These decoys are homemade and two-dimensional. The really great ones are hinged so, after a long day of popping snow geese, the hunters can fold up the cow decoy and stick in the trunk or back of the pickup or wherever.

What they do, Iím told by my sister, is two hunters hide behind the cow decoy and move slowly, acting like a cow, into the midst of a bunch of cows. A bunch of cows is technically known as a herd. Anyway, they insinuate themselves into a herd of cows, get close to the snow geese in the area and blast cheerfully away, hopefully sparing the cows. At first, this made no sense to me, whatsoever. If you want to catch snow geese, you should dress up like snow geese. If you dress up like a cow, it seems to me that youíre probably more interested in bagging a filet mignon on the hoof, or at the very least, fresh hamburger.

I discussed this with Furthermore. At length. A three martini discussion.

At first, he was offended. The very idea of thinking that snow geese were so stupid as to fall for this. Why, he screeched, it was an offense to all birds!

Not so, I comforted him. I mean, look at human beings. Weíve got Wyoming hunters making cow decoys on a pattern stolen from Nebraska. Not all humans are that dumb. You just canít take offense at the idiocies of a small group, you know? Birds or humans.

Which brings us to the final point: My sister, the lawyer. She told me this story with a perfectly straight face. At no time did she crack a smile or give any indication that this cow decoy story was anything but perfectly true. Of course, thatís the lawyer genes coming through, I think. I mean, theyíre trained to fake sincerity. Still, she is my baby sister, so I listened and took notes like I really believed every word.

So, whoís dumber? The snow geese for their inability to tell the difference between a Guernsey and a sheet of black and white plywood with gunports? The cows, for even being a party to this scam? The hunters, Wyoming or Nebraska, for thinking it up? Or me, for believing my sister the lawyer, who is probably at this very moment regaling her friends and colleagues with stories of her gullible brother and his equally witless raven?

Anyway, on the off chance that this ploy really works, Furthermore and I are building a two-dimension, life-sized model of a Porsche. We have no idea what weíll catch, but, hey, you just never know, you know?




BACK TO THE HOME PAGE?

To all Lodge Trestle Board editors: Feel free to use any of the tales of Furthermore. Should you choose to do so, however, we deny any responsibility for actions by your own lodge. If, after the first couple of columns, the brethren appear restless and begin to surge toward you as you enter the lodge room, we suggest you flee and deny any connection with Furthermore.






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