Why Did You Shoot The Cow?

A Short Fiction by Bill Murphy 2021

As I’ve often said, I dream every night.  All of my dreams contain many people and places that I know… some from the past, others from the present.  But… fact and fiction (dream) are confusingly mingled.  Last’s night’s dream made a unique story, so I share it with you.

I found myself in a beautiful woodsy park, a state park?  Off behind me was a large rustic lodge.  It was obvious that whatever meeting or gathering was held there was over, as people were leaving.  I was there to pick up my Youngers daughter Molly, and two of her friends.  I saw them awaiting me up ahead, at the edge of large parking lot.  I pulled into a parking spot.

The girls all looked to be in their late teens.  I didn’t recognize Molly’s two friends.  The three girls were dressed exactly alike, in long red ‘costume like’ dresses, of the type that classical dancers wear.  They get into my smallish blue vehicle. 

It had been raining, and the ground was soft, wet and mushy.  I backed up while turning to the right, then pulled forward… and right into a deep mud-bog!  We were stuck.  Nothing I could do would free the vehicle.  I looked around, seeking help.  But the lot was completely empty!  From the back seat, one of the girls said that’d she’d call 911.  Fine by me!

Soon a policeman drove up.  He walked over to our vehicle and told us that he’ll have us out in a jiffy.  “I do this all the time,” he replied.  “Move over, I’ll take it from here.” 

I moved over to the passenger side, and the office got in.  He cranked the vehicle and moved forward no more that six inches, then reversed and backed up and equal amount.  He did this three or four times, inching farther and farther each time.  On the last time forward, we were free!  “See, I told you I’d have you out in a jiffy,” replied the officer.

No sooner than the words had left his mouth, when suddenly a large cow reared up on the side of the car, on my side.  Its rear feet were on the ground, and the front feet and legs stretched across the top.  Seeing what had just happened, the officer suddenly drew his weapon, and aiming across the front seat (and across me)!  He fired… striking the cow!  It let out one mournful howl and sank to the ground.

“W-w-why did you shoot the cow?” I asked.

“Well, it was blocking your exit,” he replied.  “Now you’re free to go!”

With that, he got out of our car and returned to his vehicle and drove away.

About that time, out of seemingly nowhere, a TV news crew of two showed up.  “We got it all on tape!” The news lady said.  “What made him shoot the cow?”

“That’s what I’d like to know,” I replied. 

                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

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