Thursday, June 25, 2009

Chapter 5

I found an exit close to the rest area and pulled off for coffee. The lady behind the counter was wrinkled and bitter, and the coffee was weak and tasteless. I asked her if she read. She actually grunted and said, "Nope." I trashed the coffee and drove a ways up to Poor Henry's. The clouds had burned off in the center and it was hot. I tied the dogs outside and ordered a burger and a coke. Walking out to the van to get my phone charger, I saw a billboard up the access road, and I stepped back and shot it.

Inside I asked the bartender about the sign.
"It's a big deal here," he said, "Never had balls before?"
"No. What do they taste like?"
He stared off for a second, trying to add a name to the taste and texture of balls in his mouth.
"They taste like gizzards? You had gizzards before?"
"Just like that."
"Or Rocky Mountain Oysters," I heard. I looked across the bar to a guy in an orange shirt and a white beard. "They call them Rocky Mountain Oysters," he said again. Then the bartender, Todd, nodded, "Gizzards, dude. They taste just like gizzards." A guy and his wife had been sitting there, and I sold them books. The orange shirt and white beard started talking to me about his own business, homemade relish made from zucchini squash. Willie. Willie's Gourmet Relish. I shot him and a jar. It looked good. In case you want to order a jar for yourself, I promised Willie I'd include his number here. 406-258-5139.

An interesting part of this tour is that there are writers everywhere. Todd ended up buying two books from me, and he tapped the cover of mine and said, "This is what I want to do for a living. I mean, I own the bar and all, but I want to write, man."

Moments define existence. I'm full with one of the best fucking hamburgers I've ever had and I'm high on fatigue from sleeping in a ball in the back seat. I feel a bead of sweat run down the back of my neck. I want to order a beer, but I have to keep driving east. I finished my coke and paid up, unleashed the dogs and headed past the testicle sign. Poor Henry's is alright.

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