Bobby Joe


Bobby Joe

Zurg, the strict Dad, told the kids we were going to a nice quiet grown up place. Their behavior was expected to conform to the appropriate standards of the place.

The location was stunning with a tree stretching up in to the canyon that is the lobby of the Wilderness Lodge. We were seated before we could take too many pictures of the place. I was putting the kids to the test, Whispering Canyon. 


It was like an Old western, the screen comes to light on a badge, a name badge. It said BJ. His name was Bobby Joe.

He tossed a ton of straws at us. Delaney liked that.

His meeting with Zurg was a mixture of two classics westerns; the tense showdown of High Noon where Bobby Joe played Gary Cooper roll of seasoned marshal seeking to maintain order and the insanely childish stick of the VeggieTales - The Ballad of Little Joe where Dad displayed all the maturity of Larry the Cucumber and the discretion in comments of the French Peas.


The two spared almost instantly. As is typically the case with men, beer was involved, in this case, just ordering it. Dad wanted Sierra Nevada. BJ sized up the new comer as a trouble maker. Only hired guns, with a conscience to knock down, drink that hard stuff straight. It turned worse when the dame insisted on Anchor Steam.

Bobby Joe knew he had to break up the gang the new comer had ridden into town with. He gestured to one of his deputies and they started the Pony Races.

All but the older boy from Zurg’s gang got up. Dads was surprised to see that even the teen age girls, so often concerned with image and so easily embarrassed, were easily swept away.

Bobby Joe was showing just who the boss was.

Zurg sucked on his beer and eyed the surroundings. Hmm Bobby Joe had already been sowing dissention in the ranks, the older boy had bailed on the ponies out of some misguided fear his father would put pictures of it on the internet. (I ask you, would I do anything like that? Don’t answer that.)

The deputy explained the rules;
1) No running.
2) No running.
3) No running!

The jockeys, including the teen age girls pulled out of Zurg’s gang, did a lap of the joint. No running, much laughing.

Dad had the gang drop a fork loudly, as Bobby walked by. Bobby retaliated with the Mother of all Forks but the Gang just toyed with it. Zurg particularly likes this one:

American Gothic.

Bobby had seen the like of Zurg before. The look in his eye was old news and Bobby wasn’t waiting.

It was time for all the men to step forward in a manly manner he called. He stood in front of Dad and yelled out for all to hear, challenging the real men to come forward. The gauntlet was thrown down. Zurg was called out. Bobby Joe’s taunts were cruel, “Any one settin’ was a woman, a wuss or worse.” Zurg stood. Mrs Zurg reached for the camera.

“ ‘bout time fer a gun fight.” Dad thought getting’ up.

Turns out we was gonna sing and Bobby Joe was gonna lead the chorus. One hand in the air, one on the hip, and in a deep manly baritone we sang;

“I’m a little tea cup short and stout here is my….”

Dad sang out Loud and bad. Bobby Joe kept and eye on him. Zurg wasn’t broke yet.

Bobby Joe smirked. Dad sucked his beer, thinking this ain’t over sheriff

Back at the table the chow had come. Dad called for more beer and when Bobby came back with the brews we needed some red sauce for the fries. Zurg had put Mr. Dissention in the Ranks on the job.

So the Sheriff tells the kid “ta git up on da chair.” Then he looks at all the other kids and yells “Get up on the chairs all of ya!” Even the new kid in the gang, Alex, gets up.

Being an experienced evil villain, Dad saw the ploy for what it was: an effort to break the whole gang from Zurg.

Zurg, staring straight into Bobby’s eye, slowly put down the beer and stood up. Bobby broke, just a little, “What even the grown ups, You gonna do it too?”


Dad will lead this Gang Sheriff. It may be you town but I’ll lean my troops. You ain't breaking us up that easy.

We yelled, we screamed, all the other town folk looked at us and they sent over all of their catsup.

Take that Bobby Joe, Larry the Cucumber will not back down to any Gary Cooperesque sheriff. Dad can and will be as childish as anyone, anywhere, anytime! The gang knew it now.

Bobby felt that we didn’t eat enough for dessert so he did a little helping.

OK, It was time to turn the table so to speak. No not the lazy Susan, it was time to go on the offensive. Bobby Joe went ta fetch desert thinking he had won.

The Sheriff had taken his best shots, now it was Dad’s turn. Zurg pulled out a few sheets of stickers and quietly armed the kids. Showing no mercy it was one on each finger of each kid.

The troops were cautioned. Keep the ammo and your hands hidden under the table, take good aim and in the name of all that is good, wait until you see the white whipped cream of the desserts set down on the table before drawing.

As Dad planned Bobby mistook the sudden movement of the kids when the desserts were set down. His expectation was they were going for the spoons and they hit him before he knew otherwise. They hit him from all sides, covering him in stickers.

Speechless, shocked, beaten he slowly looked at the stickers then up at Zurg. The coup de grace was in Dad’s hand and pointed straight between Bobby eyes. The writing was on the wall (well a card actually.) Like a man he silently took the ThankShoe card.

Gesturing for the other deputies came around to witness the scene, he started to yell.

“This is so COOL! This is the best day ever!”

He showed the deputies the card and pin. He paused, pulled a letter and a pin from his waiter holster and showed it to Dad.

He had received a letter and pin from another guest that day as well (not a custom pin but nice none the less.) Turns out, the letter writer was from Fort Washington PA. Minutes from our main hold out.

It’s a Small World.

It was a good day for Bobby Joe.

He gave us a Where Magic Live certificate but the Sheriff he wasn’t done with us yet.

It was Pony Race time again and Bobby was doing the speech.

“Mr. Dunlap will be leading the Pony Race. The three rules are:
“1) No Passing Mr. Dunlap.
“2) No Passing Mr. Dunlap.
“3) No Passing Mr. Dunlap.”

Kim took the camera.

Zurg saddled up.

Mr. Dissention in the Ranks was at my side. He tried to pass me just as we came around to where she was with the camera. Dude you think I am not putting a picture of this on BadShoe? Wrong!

Thanks, You win this time Bobby.

I’ll be back.