Ever since the Governor shut down gatherings due to Covid 19, the Ostrich Society had to meet clandestinely. At first, they ignored the order but soon found themselves the objects of nosey Mrs. Newton, Mr. President’s neighbor, who called the Health Department to complain there was a gathering of drunkards in the garage next door. She called the police first but was told it wasn’t their purview and told her to call the health department. She did and sure enough, they sent an agent who threatened to issue a citation if they didn’t abandon the meeting. They were told they could meet virtually, but that meant drinking alone. So, they formed a plan. They decided to meet after dark and come one at a time and be as quiet as they would when approaching a trout stream when trout were rising. They put blankets over the only window and made it a point to not raise their voices, instead they snapped their fingers like beatniks back in the 50’s to voice approval or disapproval. It went fairly well, until one night, Olag Johanson, the member with the biggest hands who bartended was absent and Joe Fillmont took his place and the drinks he poured were half as generous – mainly because Joe had a smaller hand. To keep down the complains – which increased in volume – Mr. President instructed Joe to measure out three fingers of bourbon to try to equal Olag’s two fingers.
Their deception proved to work rather well until one meeting adjourned after midnight and 30 drunks tried to be quiet while trying to go through the chain link gate, all at the same time. The light in Mrs. Newton’s bedroom came on and they all thought they were busted. Thinking quickly, Horace Hornsby started meowing, three others joined in until the light went out. Apparently, Mrs. Newton thought there was a cat fight in the yard.
But all things come to an end and so it was with Covid restrictions.
The meeting was called to order at 7:30 and ended by 10. Olag was back in attendance and the glasses were filled as they were expected to be. Mrs. Newton could be seen peering out her window at them as they came in and again as they left. Horace Hornsby, seeing her peek out from behind her curtain began to meow. When the others saw and heard what he was doing, they all joined in with a flurry of meows. No one is sure if Mrs. Newton caught on, but after they all broke out in laughter, Mrs. Newton turned out the light, pulled down the shade and drew the curtain.
The preceding is reported as “The Truth, Whole Truth and Nothing but The Truth” …. give or take a lie or two.