So Si and Phil Robertson, along with this reporter, were deep in the Louisiana swamps trying out Duck Commander's new line of duck calls. It was a wet boggy mess in the bayou, and Miss Kay packed us a lunch of gator tail, crawdads and smelts. I brought the smelts, of course, and they were in the trunk of my car when I arrived at my Spanish moss destination out in the middle of nowhere.
But sometimes, the middle of nowhere is actually somewhere. It was nice to have a warm dinner in that horrible messy marsh. Mmmm mmmm good. Food is good, and Miss Kay is a wonderful cook. God bless her!
"There's a lot of gators and cottonmouths out here, so be careful," Si told me as he took a big chomp out of a gator tail. "They creep up on you and when you least expect it, they bite you."
As Si said, "they bite you," he grabbed my arm in a vice grip that felt like a lemon shark had latched onto my arm.
"Yeou-ou!" I screamed. I composed myself and looked at Si. His eyes were kind of wild and weird, like they always are when he cracks one of his jokes on Duck Dynasty.
"Yeah, I don't like those kind of critters all that much," I said. "And they'll kill me - they're definitely not the kind of animals to be domesticated, fluffed up, and made a part of a household."
Southern hospitality is great. Si, Phil, and Miss Kay let me have a b.b. gun at the Duck Commander offices, where I met them for an interview for some online magazine I contribute to - I hadn't decided where I'd send the story. . . .And as things turned out in the swamp, at the end of it all, I thought a speculative nonfiction mag might be interested. Real Creatures from the Black Lagoon, Swamp Scares, Bytes from the Bayou, and Horror Stories from the Muddy Muck were some that come to mind, right after I was shivering in anxiety after the whole swampy ordeal. - I don't know, the story may make a first editorial read, who knows? Hell's bells, it might even get published.
It was two days after Christmas and you'd figure the two long & wide-bearded millionaires would have better things to do with their gray mossy follicles than to sit out in a swamp brandishing shotguns with a slew of Si's hunting dogs howling into the trees. And me, of course. At least I wasn't that Rolling Stone rag set to put the knives to the two good-ole boys.
"This is the way we have fun. You're on Louisiana time now," Phil said.
"You don't need a watch down here," Si said.
"Do you guys ever leave the swamp?" I asked the two conservative, evangelical, duck-whistle manufacturers, who happen to be ah, I can't really say it without chuckling a bit, "glitterati."
"Nope." - they both said in unison.
"We love it here. You would to, if you'd stay a spell," Phil said.
Si blew a duck whistle, a wood duck flew up in the air and Brother Phil shot it. The dying bird tussled down from high in the air like a pass thrown by a third-string, middle-school quarterback.
"Good shot," I said, finagling with my b.b. gun, hoping another duck would fly up into the tall scraggly trees so I could take aim and fire. I wanted Si to stuff it so I could take it back home and put it on a table or a TV set.
All of a sudden, a shape-shifting form encroached the dimly-lit enclosure we'd made of sticks, weeds, and dead bushes. It looked like a demon from one of those squirrelly, early TV horror series, like The Twilight Zone, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, or The Outer Limits. The thing had green eyes, a head of hair like Phyllis Diller, several rows of teeth in its head that looked like spokes in a kid's bicycle, and it shrieked like a hawk or an eagle that had just been bitten by an alligator.
"Here comes our old buddy. The rougarou," Si said with a hiss. The thing was now about five feet in front of us and was wailing and grinding its green and purple teeth.
Phil stepped back a few, steadied his shotgun, and blasted at the supernatural entity.
"Don't do that Phil. You know shooting that thing don't work. The pellets fly right through it," Si said.
"Yeah, you don't want to antagonize it," I said.
"Shut up, Si. You shut up, too, Mr. Reporter man," Phil said, then with beady determined eyes, Mr. Phil Robertson, now Rev. Phil Robertson, our swamp exorcist, looked right into the thing's eyes and hissed, "Get behind me, demon. Get behind me, you swamp devil."
Phil blasted another round at the hideous thing. The thing sort of just flopped around in the water for a while and seemed to be laughing at us. It made a noise like a city bus idling loudly at a bus stop, in dire need of a muffler. By then, it became a blob of what looked to be green and orange gelatin. And it had long antennas shooting up from its rotund head, which appeared to be some weird, extraterrestrial, fat-assed, monstrosity - just like one of those minor characters from an old Star Wars movie.
"Phil! Don't shoot the darned-blasted thing! You know firing away at the rougarou don't do nothin' to it! Holy tarnation, it seems to like being shot!"
The rougarou flew up into a copse of cypress trees and its tongue slid out, flopping and flipping around like something you'd see a short-order cook do at a southern pancake house.
It wailed like a cow that had just been hit by a freight train. It wasn't all that frightening, right then, but things were getting weird.
"You're probably a homo, too," Phil said, then blasted another double dose of 12-guage fire right into that rougarou.
"Don't call him that, Phil. You know it doesn't like to be called names," Brother Si protested.
"Shut up, Si, I'm in control here. For the Lord said wherever two or more are gathered in My Name, there will be no fury like a shotgun scorned," and with this, Phil pumped the big old gun and fired away, again.
Si took a couple of shots at the rougarou then, and then I shot it a few times with my b.b. gun. All I can say is that after about an hour of this nonsense, the rougarou seemed to get bored and just left. By then, the smoke from the gunfire was so thick we couldn't even see one another, and we were standing shoulder-to-shoulder, firing away at that supernatural swamp varmint!
After the rougaou split, probably going around the end of the swamp to antagonize some poor old alligator, we shot a few more ducks and the dogs swam out into the murky brown and green water to fetch them for us.
"You get out the fiddle and you get out the bow, Lord almighty how I like the pace of life slow, living on Louisiana time is the way to go, Louisiana Monday and Tuesday night. My brother Phil and my disowned brother Jack, we're heading out the door with a possum as a snack, going down to shoot a Rougarou in the Louisiana outback, Louisiana Wednesday night. . .," Si sang on and on and on. . . .