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Some Kids I Have Known
Silver Spur Café

There is a café in our town called the Silver Spur.  Can't remember when it was first opened.  Seems like most of my life time it has always been there. All around the Silver Spur was   a wide gravel drive big enough to allow the lonely, hard driving, truck drivers to swing into the space with no slowing down of their big rigs.  Somewhere in the progression of time the interstate went through and most of the big rigs don't go through here anymore. A few deliver to the small isolated areas but not many, so now  around the eatery is mostly an open gravel drive.

Today, the image of the redneck in a broken down pick-up truck has been replaced by the sharp shining trucks parked at an angle and up close to the double doors on the east and the west of the entry. The new truck glosses over what is still a personality going back to one can only guess how far.

“Howdy Pete, consarn yer hide, whar yah been?”  “I ain't seen you in a coon's age.”

“Yeah?  Oh yeah, I reckin yer right on that.”

“How you bean anyhow?”

“Ah ahrite, aaahrite, cain't complain. Me and the Misses we're doin' ahrite.”

“You still hooked up with that ornery gal. I'll swar, she's got to be the meanest woman thar ever was.”

“Yep, yep.  Shore as the world she is.” This response made with a grinning expression spoke more than words.

As that small crowd took their place in a booth next to the wide window directly behind them came another  party and they were acquainted with those who were exchanging hello's.  Their grins were equally as wide and they had an expression on their face to make one believe they knew some great secret.

“I see you got your youngun's with yu this evenin.”  The man who was already sitting in a booth also called out to the newest arrivals.

“Yeah, yeah, oh yeah.”  A wide smile on all their faces said these people had finished a days work and were ready to sink into the soft booths while they ordered their evening meal. The “younguns” were not that young and looked to be in their middle twenties.

“Ar' you kids workin' or goin' tah school?”

The girl turned around from her place where she was already seated. “We are in school.  We're going to vo-tech.”

The friendly acquaintance dipped his head as was a customary way of expressing an Oklahoma agreement.  “You like it thar?”

“Oh yeah!  We do, we like it, we really like it.”

That group settled in and they were looking over the menu when a young woman came in alone. Her medium blond hair was just to her shoulders and was styled in a becoming way. She was past the bloom of youth but still had a girlish look about her.  A soft colored T-shirt over a  pair of denim jean shorts  gave on lookers a pleasant knowledge this girl was blessed with lovely long legs. In another world she would have had a classy look about her.

“Hi Dad.”  The woman gave everyone the knowledge the man setting at one of the western looking tables was her father.

If the man spoke to her no one heard him, in fact all the time the girl was visiting with him her voice was audible but his wasn't.

He pushed the newspaper toward her with what was obviously the want ad section. In turn she looked at him with an expression showing surprise. Whether the shock was from her father showing her the paper or if it was from what was there. She flopped the paper over to close it with a definite gesture of defiance.

“She won't hire me.   I've already tried.”

The girl's father made no comment as he pulled the paper back over to his place.

Maybe the suggestion of an unpleasant situation while her father was in front of her triggered the woman's anxiety.  She was speaking to her father but in the small room of obviously well acquainted folks her speech carried all over.

“Well, they pulled a clothes' hanger on my son today.”

Of course, we in our ignorance,  had not a clue of what she spoke but there were those  of our age who didn't either.  “What's that?”  One of the older men asked.

“You know.  When a kid is running down the hall you hold out your arm really stiff and he runs into to it at neck level. It knocked him all the way to the floor.”

The older patron studied the woman as he asked, “Who did that? Was it a coach or a teacher?”

“No, it wasn't anyone working there. They had no name tag with their name on it. It wasn't enough that they knocked him down but the man reached down, jerked my son up and slammed him against the lockers. I'll be up there in the morning at eight and I better not find out it was a parent who did it.”

There was a silence to fall over the group that once had been so jovial. Everyone spoke in muted voices and nothing more was said about the incident. The hush over the place was a sudden change from what had been a light-hearted group.

On their way home I had to make the observation to my husband.  “Isn't it strange as to how we can be only a couple miles from home and all at once in a totally different world?”

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