The Chronicles of Cletus

I can keep a man for 19 years, but a pair of antlers for my car?

Folks, we’re talking three antlers in just as many days. I wish it were three pairs, though. Because then I wouldn’t be driving around town with just one antler jutting up proudly from the driver’s side window.

Of course, the alternative would be to drive around town with just a red nose on the front end of my giant gas-guzzling Chevy.  That alternative was, indeed, my reality from Saturday evening until Sunday afternoon when I waltzed into a local store and snagged up a new set.  You know, to replace the set that flew off somewhere in the middle of nowhere.  Actually, now that I think about it, I don’t have one red nose.  I have two!  One on the front and one in my trunk.  I thought about getting rid of it, but who are we kidding here? At this point, I should hold on to it; I’m sure I’ll be using it soon.

So, antler number 1 and 2.

I’ve had them since last Christmas in southern New Mexico.  I can only assume my Rudolph-Mobile was happy and content in the dry climes of the desert because they never came off.

Ahem.  Allow me to correct myself.

They have catapulted themselves into the car, smacking me in the head and leaving me feeling as if I just went into cardiac arrest whilst sitting in the drive thru of one fast food joint or another.  BUT, they never flew off the window, careened past the side of the vehicle and disappeared from sight.

I’d like to think this contributed to the fantastic display of stupidity I gifted my oldest and youngest with this past Saturday evening.  Our big old gas hog hurled down the road towards our destination, a Christmas party, when I found myself feeling overheated.  I’m sure I’m not the only one this happens to (I hope I’m not the only one).

On occasion, when it’s hot or I’m feeling flustered, excited- whatever; I manage to go from a pale white girl to a splotchy red mass of anxiety.  It’s there for the world to see.  Spreads from my neck up to my cheeks. It wouldn’t be so bad if it were my entire face- I’d just say I got a sunburn (what? It could happen). Maybe a tanning mishap. Something. Anything!  But no, I blotch.  I’ve had strangers ask me if I were suffering from some malady to which I always reply no while in my head thinking (well, yes ma’am I do. It’s called humility with a dose of neurosis.)

So there I was, on my way to a party heating up faster than an egg on a sidewalk in a heat wave and I can feel it.  The Dreaded Red creeping up my face.  What’s a girl to do?  Don a green cap and say I thought it was a costume party with a produce theme?  No, though that does have merit… Did I mention I was wearing a red sweater?

I decided to crack the window.  Surely that would help! After all, it was a balmy 15 degrees fahrenheit; give or take a few degrees.

And then it happened.

The window was cracked, and apparently my mind too.  The flush was slowly receding from my face when the thought entered my mind.  The antler.  Maybe I should remove it from the window.  And so I began to reach for it when it suddenly popped off and WHOOSH!

Well thanks a lot Mother Nature.  I could’ve handled it myself.

My oldest, in all of his 17 years of droll humor, looks at me from across the middle console and states succinctly, “Well, that wasn’t the best idea.”

No kidding, Sherlock.

Not wanting to roll up as Cletus the one antler reindeer, I hatch a brilliant plan.  As we continue to dash down the road in our sleigh of misfortune at 45 mph, I lay my plan out to my dubious teen and my very amused nine year old.  I’ll roll down his window and he can remove the lone antler. You know, so we don’t look stupid……

I’m sure you can guess what came next.  Pretty sure, like my son, you figured it out before it even happened.


What can a girl do but proceed to sing a hearty rendition of Grandma Got Ran Over By An Antler while driving her last mile in utter and abject humility tinged with a healthy dose of self-appreciation for the ridiculous.

Now, I’m sure you’re wondering where the third antler comes in.  And for all of our sakes I’ll keep this part short and sweet.


Driving home from the post office I noticed my radio wasn’t working at all.  No time display. Nothing.  It was working when I parked at the post office.  I thought to myself “I wonder if anything else is out.” And so without thinking?  I rolled down the passenger window.



Number of pedestrians or wildlife who might now have concussions from flying antlers- 3


Merry Christmas from the Mustard Seed and Cletus, the One Antlered Reindeer …for now.


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