Hello! It’s Terrific Tuesday again. How’s everything in your neck of the woods?
Last week I trended toward “The Friendly Beasts” in the nativity. I did a cow story. Today I am doing the donkey. Last week surprised you? Don’t worry today will, too.
In the days of old in the middle east the shaggy, little brown donkey carried the weary travel along the dusty roads of Israel. Mary rode one into “The Little Town of Bethlehem, how still we see you lie. Above the deep and dreamless streets the silent stars go by…” Excuse me I digress into carols frequently the closer I get to Christmas.
I have one donkey story. Years ago I played in a donkey basketball game in Central Virginia. I was still skinny back then. I cannot imagine why people turn out for a donkey basketball game. But it has to be watching the riders making donkeys of themselves. Or the better noun for the friendly donkey that starts with an “A.”
I rode because my hubby asked me to. Once again the late Bobby Benson. He belonged to a civic organization that used the donkey ball game as a fundraiser. I grew up with a horse, therefore I was a better candidate than he. Hmmmph!
I am not sure why donkey’s don’t mess on the floor, but these did not. I was stationed half court on a donkey. Uncooperative donkey, he just didn’t move. I finally got him down near the basket and yelled for my team mate Carl, a forty something bald fellow, to toss me his rebound. Tossing is not easy from the back of a donkey. Carl sort of bounced the ball which ended up rolling down the court like a bowling ball.
That meant I had to get off the donkey to get the ball. I believe it was a male conspiracy.
He seemed almost asleep. If there is one thing to be said about a donkey, it is despite their homely appearance, they have great eyelashes. The donkey looked sleepy peaceful under those eyelashes. I dropped the reins and hopped off. As I stooped to pick up the ball, he took off running and “hehhheehhawwiinnggg,” down the court.
The referee said, “You have to get back on him to throw the ball.”
For the next five minutes I chased the donkey all over the back court while the crowd roared with laughter. I finally snagged his reins again and he pulled back and planted his front feet in a classic stubborn donkey pose. He had on rubber donkey shoes, so it was a firm stance. The crowd roared again. It was easy to see who was being made a donkey out of on the court. I finally just laid over his back and gave the ball a side armed toss down the court so the next fool could be ridiculed. The donkey went back to sleep and I sat stoically on his back until the end of the game.
We lost. 2-zip.
I prefer to think of that evening as a golden moment of my charity work. I was so ticked off at the donkey. I realize now he was trained to run and move when I was off his back and to be asleep when I was on it, but I swear he laughed at me when he brayed. I think he called me a Dumb Donkey or the “A” word if it makes more sense to you. Bobby Benson thought I was hilarious. He soon found he was in the dog house, so he didn’t find that too funny. Attention boys and men. Always remember– don’t make a donkey out of your wife or girlfriend in public. You will get to sleep on the couch or exist in Antarctica where the chill is big!
I have never wanted to see or play in another donkey game either. It would be a predictable ending.
So here is this week’s verse from The Friendly Beasts carol. According to lore, the stable animals come alive on midnight on Christmas Eve and speak to the Babe in the manger.
“I,” said the donkey, shaggy and brown,
“I carried His mother uphill and down,
I carried His mother to Bethlehem town;
I,” said the donkey, shaggy and brown.
See ya next week!