I got a call a few days back from my old friend Bubba back home.

This was most fortuitous because previously that same day, I was out walking and heard my name called from across 6th Street. It was a fellow who was standing just outside a local watering hole named Bobby G’s. After exchanging pleasantries, he informed me that he wanted to hear from Bubba. I said I would try.

I couldn’t be more definitive than that. The problem is that Bubba’s been pretty cagey these days. When I write about our conversations, he feels kind of exposed. He’s been thinking about maybe taking a run for public office one of these days and so has been afraid of having his beliefs too widely known.

“Because the one thing politicians don’t want you to ever know is what they really believe,” he told me.

So when he called, I was kind of surprised.

“Hello there,” I said. “It’s been too long. Have you decided not to run for public office?”

There was a pause on the other end. And then came an answer so ... well... so grammatical that I couldn’t believe it was Bubba.

“Not run for public office,” he said. “Well, whatever do you mean?”

Huh? I thought. Then I said, “The last time we spoke, you said that you were thinking of running for public office and were afraid of being quoted on some of the things you said.”

Again there was a pause.

“While it is interesting that you remember it that way,” he said, “I cannot say that I recall that particular conversation and so I cannot affirm that statement.”

This was getting ridiculous.

“Is this because I sometimes report on our conversations in the newspaper?” I asked.

“I can neither affirm or deny...” he began, but I cut him off.

“Bubba,” I said. “Have I ever written anything you said that you wouldn’t tell to the whole world anyway?”

Again, a little pause.

“No,” he said finally. “But what about that guy, what’s-his-name, Snowden? You know how he said everything we did was being monitored by the NSA.”

“Bubba, this is something that maybe you can help me on,” I thought I would try to calm him down a bit. “When we were little, our mommas taught us that we should be careful what we did because Jesus was watching us all the time.

He knew everything we did, good and bad, so we’ve better just be good all the time. She also said Jesus heard everything we said, so just say what you’d want Jesus to hear. Why can’t you just take that advice now?”

This time, he didn’t pause so long before he responded.

“Because I don’t believe that Obama is Jesus.”

Then there was a bit of silence when that little hamster he has between his ears began to turn the wheel.

“Er, not that he would say that he was. Or that there would be anything wrong with that. And by the way, why do you keep calling me Bubba?” he said, sounding a bit nervous.

“I don’t know any Bubba, and quite frankly, I don’t even know who you are. I just found this phone and dialed a number from it. Yes, that’s it. If you see this Bubba, tell him I found his phone and left it on the road where he lost it.”

I sighed.

“Sure, whatever,” I said. “Talk to you later, Bubba.”

“Talk to you later....er. Bye.”

Bobby Winters, a native of Harden City, is associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Mathematics at Pittsburg State University. He blogs at redneckmath.blogspot.com and okieinexile.blogspot.com. You may contact him at okieinexile@gmail.com. We invite you to “like” the National Association of Lawn Mowers on Facebook.

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