View Full Version : Antlers Galore

2013-Jul-09, 10:03 PM
I've only made up one joke in my life that later came back to me as told by a total stranger. I made it up when I was playing that kid's game of book titles and authors, like:

"Yellow River," by I.P. Daily
"A Hundred Yards to the Boathouse," by Willie Makeit (illustrated by Bette Wont)

My joke, which I made up sitting on a swingset in Nahant, Mass., somewhere in the late 50's, was a kind of a cheat, as you'll see, but I liked it. Here it is:

"Antlers in the Tree Tops," by Hu Goost de Mouse

I was then told that joke by a new classmate while lying in our bunks, in the hold of a small liner crossing the Atlantic, in 1969. (All on our way to a junior year of high school abroad, when I was 15.)

The end of this story is that I later actually saw antlers in the treetops. The old bus we were riding in Morocco back in 73-4 hit a bump, and I glanced out of my windows to see some hideous, enormous bird up in an olive tree eating its branches. That species of bird turned out to be "goat." Yeah, goats climb trees, and this one had little horns.

Spain's Prime Minister had just been blown up by ETA, so we were cooling it in southern Morocco until the frantic police checks calmed down. What with my hippy hair, my friend's Afro, and our manner of dress and talk, we had been getting stopped a lot. And that Moroccan trip, well, that's another story.

Late edit: Fixed example.

2013-Jul-09, 11:09 PM
Maybe a generational thing, or perhaps regional, but I don't understand the meaning of "goose" as a verb. Is it slang?

2013-Jul-09, 11:14 PM
Sorry, I looked it up, so no need to elaborate. I haven't heard it, though, maybe I had a deprived childhood...

2013-Jul-10, 02:49 PM
The end of this story is that I later actually saw antlers in the treetops.

No, you didn't. You saw horns, which are not at all the same thing.

2013-Jul-10, 05:36 PM
Well, yeah, they were only horns, Mr. Fussy! ;)

I actually took a long time to figure out what I was seeing, since before the bus hit the bump I was sound asleep. Thought it was a large buzzard, then took 15 minutes convincing myself I wasn't hallucinating.

Cool bus ride, though, complete with animals and luggage on the roof, and a "rest" stop at a very special place in the middle of nowhere, where at the time Morocco apparently exiled many severely handicapped people. It was quite a sight. Best 'pincho moruno' (like shish kebab) I ever had in my life, cooked over an open fire of palm branches, by a very cheerful gent who happened to walk on all fours.

... And gosh do I miss that old big world, where distances were great, travel slow and full of lively detail, contact with and knowledge of others far less, leading to a lot more open and friendly curiosity about strangers. That sort of ignorance was indeed bliss. People can hate you on sight before you even open your mouth nowadays. Back then we had a blast in a train compartment with a couple of locals on our way from Casablanca south, just shooting the breeze in broken French.

2013-Jul-10, 06:42 PM
Sounds like a great trip!