Mooner’s Tincture Of Armor Distinguishing Trait; Take IQ Test Here


So. It’s a glorious Monday morning and I’m harvesting tomatoes at a nice clip. We’re not at the many bushel-fulls-per-day rate of a typical June, but I was required to use the big wagon to collect my luscious orbs at this mornings collections. The Cherokee heritage and Merced are strong producers this year and are blushing out early. The Cherokee are the deep purple and red babies that look almost black when ripe.

Usually the early harvest are not the best flavored. Their skins are thinner and not as tough as a later production model, but the flesh is typically not as firm or sweet. But this not a typical year in any way and these first tomatoes are great!

I’ve been keeping in almost constant contact with Rick Perry ever since we found Rush Limbaugh engaged in sweaty pig sex with the neighbor’s hogs. I harness the ostrich to the above mentioned wagon as its motor and then put the dogs and the fucking cat inside the wagon for navigation and comment. Ricky is getting better but he still says the wedding is off. Squirt told me that last night Rick said to her, he said that, “Rush Limbaugh is a P.I.G. hog.” That’s one of Gram’s favorite things to say.

Squirt directs everyone around acting like a mother hen, and might just be the most adorable little puppy ever. She’s barking orders at everyone and is quite the taskmaster. Yoda acts dumb, because he is dumb, and reminds me of the Disney character, Goofy. He looks like his Star Wars namesake but lacks the wisdom and self restraint of the dwarf Jedi knight.

Honor is a fucking cat.

To start the day, I walked up to the Ranch Road and grabbed the newspaper before corralling the kids for the morning’s gardening. Since taking the paper away from Mother I have become emboldened with its handling. Today I read the paper while enjoying the sites and sounds of the four miscreants picking tomatoes, and then I interpreted selected stories at the breakfast table. We dragged the cat in late for the meal and were admonished by the crew already seated.

“If’n yer dominatin’ tha fuckin’ paper, Mooner, ya git yer ass here on time.” This first salvo was from Gram, and made with a mouthful of Irish oats with brown sugar and half-and-half, and what the uninitiated ear would have heard is, “Pfhn yeh thumnahinh pthuthnh pothr, Moonth, yahth thun thooth thaphpholp (Hocker noise) thphm.”

Interpreting a clean mouth full of my grandmother’s fractured English can be difficult. The same words spoken through her mush-filled maw can be an adventure. She’s lucky I love her and enjoy serving as her translator. OK, I’m the lucky one. I find the old goat’s bladder totally fucking hilarious.

“Keep your panties on, Gram, I’ll sit and get to today’s news as soon as I get a cuppa Joe.” I grabbed my coffee and sat down to a table full of snickers. Everyone knows Gram doesn’t wear panties.

“Today’s first newsworthy item is that since the year 1990, more than 2,000 convicted prisoners have been released from prison. These are only the ones convicted of serious crimes and of these, half were serving murder terms and 15% were on death row. That, folks, was 300 people who would have been wrongly killed because of a botched legal system.”

My words rung to silence at the Johnson family breakfast table. I think everyone was waiting for Mother to chime in. All she did was snort, a “Harrumph,” a noise she makes when hearing something she doesn’t like.

Those of us not named Mother debated the issue for awhile and I went to the next item. “Well, it looks like Herr Mitt Rommel is having a touch of trouble getting endorsements. Seems his former opposition all want him to let them run as President on this ticket before they’ll give him their support.”

I thought my little joke to be funny, but not my mother. “You’re an asshole, Mooner. Mr. Romney has the full support and backing of all smart minded Republicans and you made that up.”

The entire room “Oohed and Ah’d” at Mother calling me an asshole. My mother doesn’t curse. “Says so right there on the second page of the front section, my darling maternal unit.” Here I opened the paper to the page and noisily shook the wrinkles out. The thin newspaper snapped with a “pop” when I flicked my wrists. The paper just isn’t what it used to be. Then again, neither am I.

I started reading the article verbatim and in my best Walter Cronkite voice. After reading the entire thing I finished with a hearty, “And that’s the way it is!”

“Never in my life would I think my own children would hate me so much.” Mother had worked-up a good martyr while I read about the Mittster’s problems. “What did I ever do to deserve such a fate?”

That last line was delivered with her bead bowed, eyes on her lap and right hand draped pathetically on her bosom over her heart. I heard Gram’s cereal spoon clink off the side of her bowl and then rattle on the hard oak tabletop. Uh-oh.

“Dammit, Mother Johnson, but yer a whiny little snot. That boy’s a asshole ’cause yer a asshole—tha little shitbird didn’t git it from me. Least tha boy’s got him a tincture a armor an a funny hole. Now shut yer yapper an pass me tha bacon.”

I love that old woman. I guess my sense of humor and funny bone set me apart from the lower of the Johnson species in my Gram’s mind.

Anyway, before my ADHD takes control of the world, I wanted to make some observations about the falsely convicted info up there. The study I referenced is a joint effort between U. of Michigan and Northwestern U. Law Schools and an organization called the Center for Wrongful Convictions. If you know nothing about innocent persons going to prison and many being exterminated like rabid dogs, you should be appalled about this information—you should want an end to the death penalty because we civilized Americans were planning the killing injections of 300 more innocents.

As a falsely accused but not convicted murder charge defendant, I can tell you first hand what sorts of terror, strife and devastation the wrongly accused and their families endure. But I’m going to boil all of the bullshit down for you, I’ll make this an easy choice for supporters and detractors alike.

Close your eyes and pretend that you are standing in line with the other recently dead of your ilk at the gates of whatever heaven you plan to enter upon your death. Your god is there and this is what you hear him say, “Hi, everyone, I’m God. We’ll wait for your introductions because I don’t like to get too close to Hell’s inhabitants. I have attachment and abandonment issues like you won’t believe. You each will be given a one question test to determine if I invite you to reside here in heaven with me for all eternity, or if I’ll drop the elevator on you and send you to roast on the hot seat. The question is: Is it acceptable for even one innocent man to die from a wrongful death penalty conviction? The answer choices are “yes” and “no” and please take your time to answer. You have a lot riding on this little test.”

Had enough time to consider your answers?

Manana, y’all.

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7 Responses to “Mooner’s Tincture Of Armor Distinguishing Trait; Take IQ Test Here”

  1. mel says:

    so. i am giggling like a little girl at two things in particular…”honor is a fucking cat”…that one gets me every time…and “those of us not named mother”…hahahaha!! i think you should have taken control of the newspaperly duties a long time ago…it seems very empowering to you. even when discussing topics like the presidential race and the death penalty, there is a lightness to your words that hasn’t been there recently. does that make sense?

    and i think you know what my answer is…no, it is not acceptable for one innocent man to die. and i just got reminded of a paper i wrote in college that was a final that i never got back. i want it now. oh well.

  2. Father-of-the-Year Nominee, Mooner Johnson says:

    Mel. I’m pleased that the Titanic struggles of my life make you happy. Spreading Joy With My Pain is my middle name. Speaking of spreading Joy, there was this girl at UT named Joy Plumb. Swear to god. Free-loving hippie chick.

    As for my lighter touch, having finally accepted that life with my mother isn’t Life With Father, her barbs and prickly demeanor have a lesser negative impact on me. Also, everytime she say’s, “I don’t know what I did to deserve a son/daughter like you,” In answer, I think to myself, I think, “You had nasty, squealing pig sex with my daddy and gave him temporary happiness in his otherwise bleak marriage to you.”

    As for your unrequited paper grading, why don’t you republish it and we can grade it for you.

  3. mel says:

    See…now I feel bad. Whenever you say “Honor the fucking cat” I crack up. And the mother thing…just so suitable for the way things have been playing out lately! I would never make light of tragedy and despair…though, you seem to have accepted that it is all on her. I think she likes it…the wallowing. I don’t know…anyway…

    As for that paper…it was a final and we had to write about a form of media that the professor presented to us during the course of the class, and I got inspired by the movie “Tales from the Darkside” and the whole Debbie Harry/cannibal thing. It was excessively twisted, and completely sarcastic. The problem is that I wrote it, ummmm, 18 or 19 years ago…any my memory sucks. There is no way I could duplicate it ever. It was a work of art. I am sure the professor kept it because it was so awesome. I used to be pretty creative.

  4. chrisinphx says:

    Your Gram is as wise as mine. My Grandma has been saying “big assholes make little assholes” for as long as I can remember.

    And for the record, Generally, no. I’d much rather know someone who did something terrible to me or mine will be rotting away in jail and get to think about it

    But thats not to say that some people don’t deserve to be killed. It’s a tough question, and I’m glad it isn’t something I’m in charge of.

  5. Squatlo says:

    “… exterminated like rabid dogs…” Here’s the thing about that rabies test they give animals: if you’ve got rabies, they put you down. If you don’t have rabies, they have to put you down to prove you DIDN’T have rabies. Sort of like tossing “witches” into the pond to prove they’re witches. If they drown, they weren’t witches.
    I recently got into a long little discussion on this subject with two of my favorite women, my daughter and my wife, and both wanted to talk a lot about “victims”. I kept reminding them that several people released from death row HAD no victims, but were victims themselves. I understand the vengeance thing, and personally I’d probably feel inclined to take things into my own hands if it happened to me or mine. BUT as a society, we’re supposed to be more enlightened and evolved than to allow passions for vengeance to rule the day. At some point we have to say it’s wrong to kill people to show people it’s wrong to kill people.
    Who would Jesus execute? Or deport? Or turn away at the border?

  6. Father-of-the-Year Nominee, Mooner Johnson says:

    Mel. I was goshing you, kid. Making you smile is goal number one here to Loonyland. Laughing at our frailties might be the thing that most makes us human.

    Christo. I think I like your Gram. I think that is a tough question especially if you can only choose between Y/N and a wrong answer sends you to hell.

    Squat. I hope you didn’t tell your wife she’s wrong. Old bones heal slowly. In my eyes, anytime we kill an innocent we are all victims–we have victimized our civilization.

  7. Squatlo says:

    Mooner, a wise man never tells his wife she’s “wrong” about anything, especially if said wife is quick as a cat and has ninja skills.
    I might suggest she revisit a question, ponder it with additional information I might provide, even hint that she consider alternative theories… but never flat out tell her she’s “wrong”. Because she never is. Ever. Hope you’re reading this, honey…

    The death penalty question seems like one we should have resolved about a century ago, seriously. When the debate crowd cheered the question to your governor about his record number of “kills” it said a lot about the mindset shared by millions of Americans: we would rather put you to death than pay for your incarceration. They probably would feel the same way about ANYONE convicted of any crime. It’s not happening to them, the people involved “probably” deserve a lot worse than jail time (and sexual assaults, beatings, and mental issues associated with incarceration) and besides, why should WE pay for their food and medical care when they’re obviously no good alive in the first place?

    And those same people will stand outside of a women health clinic and spout Biblical phrases about the sanctity of life.

    Unless it’s happening to them or one of their tribe/church/family/friends, they would prefer executions to jails.

    I’ve got as much empathy for victims of horrible crimes as anyone, but can’t understand how any civilized society can justify the possible execution of an innocent man or woman. And we’ve probably had dozens of cases where innocent people have been put to death.

    When you share the death penalty with Saudi Arabia, China, Cuba, Somalia, and a few other third world nations, it ought to open eyes instead of averting them.

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