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Home Country
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December 7, 2019

It was a rare treat to have Vince come in the Mule Barn truck stop and join us for coffee. He’s usually too busy taking care of what we all know around the valley here as the “gas station gun shop.”

Vince is one of those lucky guys who figured out how to scratch his passion itch while earning a living. The passion is guns and the living is pumping gas. Ever since he received a firearms license from the feds, it’s been more fun to fill up.

He often has 12-gauge shells on sale, you see.

“Yo Vince,” Steve said, “everything okay at the gas station gun shop?”

Vince sipped coffee and shook his head. “I’ve found myself to be on the horns of a dilemma, guys. That’s why I came in here today. I need advice.”

Someone actually asks for advice from those of us in the world dilemma think tank? Some of us have been waiting years to hear that.

“What’s the problem, Vince?” asked Doc. “You know we always have advice for people whether they want it or not. All kinds of advice.”

“It’s the computers, Doc,” said Vince. “They’ve got ‘em in all the newer cars now, and I don’t know how to fix them. I don’t even know how to tell when the darn things go on the fritz.”

“Are you sure they’re plugged in?” asked Dewey. We figured that was about all Dewey knew about computers.

“They’re in the car, Dewey,” said Doc.

“Oh … yeah.”

Steve doesn’t know much about them, either, but he’s real big on giving advice.

“I think I have the answer to your problem, Vince,” Steve said. We all looked at the mustached seer of the sagebrush.

“Yep,” Steve said, “I think what you need is to hire a teenager. That should take care of it.”

We don’t even charge for this, you know.

Brought to you by Ol’ Jimmy Dollar, an illustrated kids book about a houndman and his family of dogs. Available at

"Home Country" columnist Slim Randles won three regional book awards for the two books he wrote in 2014. "Saddle Up: A Cowboy Guide to Writing" won for best how-to book and best cover design at the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards in Albuquerque. Randles lives in Albuquerque and has a dozen books currently in print.

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