Thelma Lou ate a Bible.
No, wait. Let me back up. Thelma Lou ate an heirloom Bible. In fact, she ran through a hayfield with a Bible in her mouth.
That’s right. Read that again if you need to.
It bears mentioning: I have seen some big things in my day. I’ve seen a man survive two hundred amps of electric shock. I’ve seen the world’s biggest ball of twine in Cawker City. I’ve shaken the hand of a man who played bass for Hank Williams. And once, in Freeport, Florida, I watched Chubbs Anderson lie down in the center of the main road for forty minutes after midnight without a single car rolling by.
But I have never seen a dog carry the Good Book in her mouth.
It all started at my buddy’s farm. My pal’s place is a secluded spot with a few wooden sheds, pastures, and some cattle.
His place is perfect for dogs who need to stretch their legs, and it’s located a convenient four and a half hours away from my house.
When we arrived, I opened the door and Thel became a dematerialized black-and-tan streak, moving at the speed of sound. She was running to greet one of her canine friends.
Boobie (a derivative of “Boob”) is an eight-month-old bluetick hound with more energy than a nuclear power facility.
His name was originally “Boo,” but my friend’s two-year-old daughter kept putting a “B” on the end of the name. “Boob” became “Boobie.” And on special occasions: “Bobbie Boobie Boo.”
The day started off good. Together, Boobie and Thelma Lou had a big time. I sipped sweet tea and caught up with a friend, and watched my dog engage in positive, character-building canine activities, including:
Digging, running, chewing on the bare legs of defenseless children, chewing residential siding, chewing tin cans, chewing automobile tires, urinating on flowers, eating the aforementioned flowers, and of course, carrying the Gospel.
The Bible incident went like this:
My friend’s daughter came marching through the house with Thel trailing her—well, actually, Thel was dangling from her shirttail.
Then, I saw Boobie lock his eyes on the leatherbound book on the sofa table. And what happened next can only be described as an event that was every bit as spiritual as it was awe inspiring.
Boobie leapt onto the sofa table. The Bible flopped on the floor. Then my Thelma Lou lurched forward and fit the entire Word of the Lord into her mouth, and they both tore off.
And we all screamed.
“NONONONONONONONONONONONOTHELMA!” I said.
“NONONONONONONONONONONONOBOOBIE!” said my friend.
But they didn’t hear. Thel sprinted out the open door with her sidekick Boobie, following her, heading for God-Knows-Where. The mission field, maybe.
My friend used a very bad word, then said, “That’s my great GRANDMOTHER’S Bible!”
Thus, we chased them on foot. We ran through a wide open field, screaming and clapping at the same time.
Which is a necessary skill all dog owners have. We dog-people like to clap whenever we shout our dog’s name because this effectively alerts onlookers that we are complete toadstools.
So, today I had better things to be doing than chasing a dog across a million-acre farm. After all, I’m a writer—sort of. I have things to write about, places to go, people to meet. But instead I watched two hounds pretend to be Paul and Silas.
Anyway, I’m happy to report that we finally got the Bible back, unharmed. And while I write this, Thelma Lou is chewing on one of MY books in my backyard. I’m watching a black-and-tan puppy devour my paper-bound stories to pieces.
I guess what I’m trying to say is: I’m really sorry about my friend’s great grandmother’s Bible.
But I hold Boobie personally responsible.
Diane - June 28, 2018 5:43 am
Best Thelma Lou story thus far!!!????
Beth Reed - June 28, 2018 6:15 am
Being a dog Lover I have witnessed this before… The telling, the chasing and trying to stay calm while clapping and baby talking my fur baby. (s).
In one of the incidents it was my husband’s wallet with our last $20.00 in it.
Never found the money or the wallet. It did teach my man to put his belongings up as high as he could from then on out.
Thankfully no heirloom Bible was in reach but that was just a stroke of luck….
I’m with you on this one. Thelma’s partner in crime is 50 percent to blame. So glad that the Bible was not damaged. Whewwww you lucked out on that one… Beth Reed (hugs)…
Beth Reed - June 28, 2018 6:16 am
Meant to say Yelling…
Kelly - June 28, 2018 9:50 am
Somehow they Always find one of our most beloved treasures to make us give chase and act like total fools! Dogs are definitely smarter then we are most times! Glad the Bible is safe!
Joan Lang - June 28, 2018 11:41 am
I’m so glad you have a dog again, Sean!
Bob Lovell - June 28, 2018 12:18 pm
Dogs occasionally chew leather Bibles. They are hungry for the Word.
Becky - June 28, 2018 12:19 pm
This made me laugh and I really needed that this morning. Thank you for brightening this morning.
Lydia - June 28, 2018 12:37 pm
Great one-LOVE this !
Jack Darnell - June 28, 2018 12:43 pm
Ah ha, one of ’em people. “I didn’t say it was your fault, I’m just blaming you!”
Marty from Alabama - June 28, 2018 1:04 pm
I must say Thelma Lou has excellent taste (did I just say that?) in her choice of reading material. This was a much needed bit of true to life humor.
Again, thank you for being my friend.
Alicia Kasen - June 28, 2018 1:55 pm
Oh my word, I can’t stop laughing! I
Darlene Breland - June 28, 2018 1:55 pm
Made me think of our old friend Lum York who was good friends with Hank and played bass with his band. Miss him and his stories.
Julie Y - June 28, 2018 1:58 pm
“the mission field” made me LOL. Loved your story. Last year our new puppy chewed into a million pieces my parents’ wedding certificate (from 1955) which was tucked into an album on a (low) bookshelf. This is why God makes puppies so cute — to make transgressions like that easier to forgive. 🙂
Pat - June 28, 2018 2:02 pm
Charlu Kent - June 28, 2018 2:15 pm
Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!??❤️?
Jody - June 28, 2018 2:20 pm
A spirit lifter. Thanks again for the morning smiles
Jakki - June 28, 2018 2:45 pm
It’s funny how we still love them afterwards, isn’t it? Glad the Bible survived intact.
Dave - June 28, 2018 3:06 pm
I’m sure most of your old English teachers have pointed this out but 2 hounds is two not to. The language is as important as what you’re trying to say.
Edna B. - June 28, 2018 3:21 pm
A wonderful story. So glad the Bible was okay. It’s raining here, and your story today is a ray of sunshine. You have a great day, hugs, Edna B.
Audrie McLane - June 28, 2018 3:39 pm
My name is.Audrie I am Edna B’s oldest daughter. She sent me your link and I absolutely love your stories ?
jnearen - June 28, 2018 8:55 pm
Good one Sean. 🙂
Gretchen - June 30, 2018 12:33 am
Finally! A laugh out loud column!!! ?
joyce luker - July 3, 2018 11:38 pm
Poor Thelma Lou!!
Jeanette - August 24, 2018 10:17 am
Paul and Silas heading out to the mission field….oh my! (laughing SO hard!)
michele - August 24, 2018 3:11 pm
That was a great story!!