Abe and Emma were halfway through the long trip into town, with nary a word being spoken. An earlier discussion has gotten somewhat heated and turned into a full-fledged argument. Neither was willing to concede, and silence had taken over.

Passing a barnyard containing an assortment of pigs, goats and mules, Emma just couldn't resist.

"Relatives of yours?" she asked sarcastically.

"Ayuh," replied Abe. "In laws."

Feedin' the Caows

roundchurchA young preacher had been called in to substitute for a sick colleague, pastor of a small rural church. Upon arriving for Sunday services, he found that the congregation that day consisted of one grizzled old farmer.

"What should we do?", he asked the farmer.

"Well, preacher," said the farmer, "I tell ya. If I take a load o' hay up th' pasture t' feed th' caows n' only one shows up, I still feed 'er."

"Good point," agreed the preacher, who proceeded to deliver his very best hellfire-and-brimstone sermon. He asked on the way out what the farmer thought of it.

"Well, preacher," said the farmer, "I tell ya. If I take a load o' hay up th' pasture t' feed th' caows n' only one shows up, I feed 'er, but she don't get th' whole dang load!"


The Hunter

During deer season, an obvious Flatlander all decked out in red hat, red jacket and red pants entered the store at the Corners to ask directions.

Looking up from the checker game he was losing to Bert, Earl asked the stranger, "Takin' an awful chance with them black boots, ain'tcha?"


Controlling One's Environment

barnwallI'm looking at something I never would have seen had a building still stood where I'm standing now.

My thought is that the occupant of the second-floor apartment got tired of looking out the window at a blank brick wall, and painted this farm scene (that reddish thing in the middle is a barn) on it.

The lot on the northwest corner of North Street and Elmwood Avenue in Burlington remains vacant. The building, which housed the former Mazel's Shoe Store, is still there, but the painting has since been covered over. It did, however, provide someone with some Happiness for a time.

If any visitors from Burlington (with some knowledge of the Old North End) know anything about this, I would love to hear from you.



What's in a Name?

Back when them Montpeculiar highway folks came through thinkin' there's a need to name everything in sight, they asked old Harold what folks 'round here called that narrow waterway that runs off his farm and under the road.

"Always called it 'the crick'," says Harold, feelin' talkative.

A couple weeks later, them highway folks is back, cementin' in a signpost, an' puttin' up a fancy sign readin' "Crick Creek".

Harold stands there, watchin' the whole process. "Shoulda been t'other way 'round," says he.


The Lawyer

A farmer noticed that his prize cow was missing from the field through which the railroad passed, and filed suit against the railroad for the value of the cow. The railroad's big city law firm sent one of its junior attorneys to "handle things". The attorney immediately cornered the farmer outside the courtroom and tried to get him to settle.

The attorney did his best selling job, and the farmer finally agreed to take half of what he was claiming.

After the farmer signed the release and took the check, the young lawyer couldn't help but gloat a little over his success. He said to the farmer, "You know, I hate to tell you this but I put one over on you. I couldn't have won. The engineer was asleep and the fireman was in the caboose when the train went through your farm that morning. I didn't have one witness."

The old farmer replied, "Well, I'll tell ya, young feller, I was a mite concerned about winning myself when that durned cow came home this morning!"


Beware of Dog

Upon entering the little country store, the stranger noticed a sign saying; DANGER! BEWARE OF DOG! posted on the door. Inside he saw an obviously harmless old hound dog asleep on the floor near the wood stove.

He asked the storekeeper, "Is THAT the dog folks are supposed to beware of?"

"Yup, that's him," he replied.

The stranger couldn't help but be amused. "He certainly doesn't look dangerous to me. Why in the world would you need that sign?"

"Because," the owner replied, "before I put up that sign, folks kept trippin' over him."


Taking Issue

Elmer was being a bit on the cloudy side one day when he observed that the weather in Vermont consisted of "Ten months of winter and two months of damn poor sleddin'."

Abe disagreed. "T'ain't so", says he. "We got all four seasons. They just ain't too sure whose turn 'tis next!".

Note: There are some who argue that "Mud" should be officially recognized as Vermont's fifth season, being that period between Winter and Spring during which the ground is not solid enough to walk on without sinking in up to your ankles. During an especially severe Mud, it is not unheard of to walk out of the house to find nothing but the car's radio antenna sticking up out of the driveway.

See also the story of "Eighteen-Hundred-n-Froze-to-Death" in our History Section.


God's Country (contributed by Jill Lillis)

A man decided to write a book about churches around the country. He flew to San Francisco, and started working east from there. Going to a very large church, he began taking photographs and writing notes. He spotted a golden telephone on the vestibule wall, and was intrigued with a sign which read: "$10,000.00 a minute." Seeking out the pastor, he asked about the phone and the sign. The pastor answered that the golden phone is, indeed, a direct line to heaven and if he pays the price he can talk directly to God. The man thanked the pastor and continued on his way.

As he continued to visit churches in Seattle, Atlanta, Greensboro, Tampa, and all across the United States, he found more phones with the same sign, and the same answer from each pastor. Finally, he arrived in New England. Upon entering a church in Newport, behold, he saw the usual golden telephone. But THIS time, the sign read, "All Calls, 25 cents".

Fascinated, he asked to talk to the pastor. "Pastor," the man said, "I have been in churches all across this country, and in each church I have found this golden telephone and have been told it is a direct line to heaven, and that I could talk to God. But in the other churches, the cost was $10,000.00 a minute. Your sign reads 25 cents a call. Why?"

The pastor smiled benignly, and replied, "Son, you're in Vermont's a local call."




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