Category Archives: Published Short Stories

Close Shave (short story)


Close Shave


My muse was loaded and threw one at me while shaving today. I never know. I think she thinks she owes me one……… or maybe wants one up.

I needed it……. the shave. It’s 2pm and I should sit and relax for a bit, but I notice my ears were getting’ woolly and I don’t need my grand girls telling me I have hair in my ears again.

I was given this new multi-bladed hybrid razor for Christmas. It’s the best razor I’ve ever had I believe.

Why, I could take my truck on a cross country drive, and with some water and face butter, be clean when I got there.


Ya, there!

There by the bridge at the south end of the lake. You know the one that has the dead tree that hangs out over the water off the point where the kingfisher has perched and hunted for years.

He was there 35 years ago and he was still there year before last.

You know.

I hollered across to the other side, “what’s happening?”

Whomever it was said, perch are bitten strange, but they’re bitten.

I bought a license when I came into Chamberlain earlier.  Just in case I wanted to stand on that concrete block and fish for the fish De jour.

I didn’t use it so my license is fresh and I am excited.   It’s one of my favorite spots, since I was old enough to drive. I could disappear there for a whole day, come home after dark and nobody even knew I was gone.

So, one pole, a nice light one with 6lb. Spin cast with the rod about six and a half feet long, a little limber.

I had a little shovel so I stuck it in the mud from the recent rain and found exactly the wiggly I needed. There were hoppers everywhere but I thought I try a thin worm first.

I rigged with a split shot and tied the line straight to the hook. “Biting strange” meant touch, feely.

I looked down at the water and saw that it was the time of the year when the water was running out enough to drift a worm over the top of the weeds that hadn’t reached within a foot of the surface yet, and were swaying with the surge. And you can see dark spots where you’d like that split shot to take it down until it disappeared.

It descends until a perch spots it and interrupts the drift of the line. Then a light pull up with the index finger….. No shoulder for this. Touchy, feely….. And if you didn’t get him, let it go and voila!!!! You made him mad and got him.

So, I’m standing there shaving in Tucson, watching myself fish at the bridge…..

…and I’m taken to another thought.

Gees I wish my kids were here to have this fun. Jaime loves to fish, Jesse, Brian and Scott. Kathy needs to be sitting there to watch what was happening.

All the while this is going on…. I’m shaving, Kathy’s watching the kids have a blast and get to live in my memory with me for a bit.

And my old mind moves back to a tricky spot to shave, now turn on the vibration for it’s final cut, rinse and dry. My CPAP is going to stick a little better tonight! LOL

I like this to happen, but we moved far away, my kids have grown and are dealing with middle adult life, money, sick kids, corporate disconnect, groceries and all of the stuff.

I don’t live in their back pockets. They don’t need my wild imagination and enthusiasm when their butts are draggin’ and they have their own little circle of timing and plans.

So kids, I just took you away to my land of dreams for the afternoon.

It was a carefree afternoon of fishing with honkers sounding and flying near.

I hope I was able to help, …………………

while I got a nice clean shave.

Your Dad


We Made It Through December (a true Christmas Story)


We Made It Through December

I remember one of the first few Christmases in Tucson. We had just run out of disposable funds about a week before Christmas.

I mean, we were holding our own, the bills were paid, there was just no extra. And I don’t remember the exact evening, but I did have a couple of bucks so I bought an Arizona lottery ticket, and I stayed up to watch the numbers, which I seldom do.
You know, sometimes people think I’m a little lite on the religion side.
Well, there’s plenty of that goin’ on already.
As for me, that night when we hit 4 and it might have been 5, numbers, I woke Kathy. It was going to be around $1800.

All of my life, I’ve felt something was watching over me. Things seemed to happen ‘just in time’ or ‘right place at the right time’ or something on my shoulder slapping my hands when I was about to make a mistake. I freely talk about it to the right people. Today I call it my ‘Muse’ whom I tease and taunt constantly. lol And sometimes…. I think I get paid back for that! lololol
But that evening and through the night I hardly slept.
And the next day, I don’t think my feet touched the ground. I took off early and went down to the lottery place and turned in my ticket.
The lady left my sight and came back with the cash (maybe a check) I think. Of course, I had to sign several times here and then there.
Anyway, 4 kids had a wonderful Christmas morning, we paid a few bills and I was left with a feeling…. I mean, within 4 days of Christmas, we were taken care of. What were the odds?
I didn’t get wordy in my thoughts. I just said ‘Thank You’ silently a hundred times.
It’s a kind of grateful that will make your nose run every time you think about it.
I got something in my eye right now.
Merry Christmas to all, Ron

So here’s Ol’ Merle Haggard tellin’ his story. It was an easy one for me to do …… we made it through December. rdd

If We Make It Through December (a Merle Haggard cover) Just click on the song title… rdd



Overflocking (inspirational)



Remembering that I grew up in a time when we replaced the Canadian goose eggs with plaster of Paris eggs to prevent the DDT fragile eggshells from being crushed while the effects of DDT were wearing down after it’s ban.
I am a conservative maybe and, (in the sense of realistic conservationist), constitutionalist.
I’m not saying Republican/Radically Christianized non-believer.
I’m saying that learning from nature has been an important part of my upbringing no matter what left turn humans tried to wash me in.
So now, having said that, growing up as I did, being an observer and growing up within a curious, Bible belt, farming, hunter gatherer culture had its effects on me.
So, I’m going to ask you to think about this. I’m not asking you to saturate yourself in it. I’m not asking you to not believe in what you believe!
I’m asking you to think about overpopulation of humans. I’m asking you to think about the cruelty of raising flocks of them that have no hope of ‘quality of life’ for any one or dozens of reasons.
I remember that we boosted populations of other species until they became infectious due to over population. I remember that we artificially increased their numbers so high, they began to die from enteritis and other diseases. I remember when we had to increase the harvest to decrease numbers to within health positive numbers.

There is a whole lot to think about here. I have to stop now to let the people that can understand this, think about it! Fortunately there are many of you that do understand that we are killing ourselves from many different directions.
So, today and on, be a good steward of ourselves and the earth. Don’t let it drive you crazy, but do what you can do to educate, self-medicate your own stewardship of yourself and everything around you, give yourself some credit for what you do, and brain think while using your heart think as a filter! rdd
Herein lies the lesson for today. 11:03:17

By Special request: Old Rivers preformed by Jerry Berens’ (Walter Brennan cover)


There was a short time when it was just JB and me. And once in a while, we’d go out to a house party to perform. This time, we were invited to play at  the Seaton’s lake home near Loveland. We had a lot of fun. A lot of what we did was taped and you’ll get to hear stuff that we can’t find other recordings of. Thanks to the Reverend and Debi Corkins, we’ve had a request for this.:

Old Rivers

Nature and I Breathed In Time (Indian Summer)


I remember going goose and duck hunting on Lake Traverse, all by myself.

The ducks and geese would come off the lake and fly low over the haystacks up at the north end islands.

I’d climb to the top of the stacks, take off my heavy brush coat, and lay on my back, my coat a pillow, just watching them.

Even while they were within shooting range, I had plenty of shots all of the time there, so I’d just watch………… and maybe take a nap in the last days of the year, when you could do that in the heat of the sun in South Dakota.

I had no need to disturb anything while I watched clouds and the Indian Summer spider webs drift by.

……… Nature and I breathed in time. rdd

The Best Men


The Best Men

The best men know spear chucking, archery, running swiftly, kill the mammoth are natural, and when accompanied by the fine arts of roasting, and saucing, tilling and wenching are as important! …… These are good,…… these are good and make the whole man. A kerchief around the neck seasoned with sweat, tanned crown of thinning silver hair…… some leather and a glint in his eye ……….. Aye! ….I’m almost out of bourbon….. so a bit of shopping too! Aye…..LOL, LOL
Good Friday Evening to you.

Ronald Douglas Drobeck