Ruby at the Kitchen Winder

Who that is at Lona’s? Gloria here from Hickory? No. Don’t think so. Don’t look like her car. Could be Kirk’s though. Could of let Gloria drive his. He just traded and got something new. Red, I think. But that car in Lona’s drive is black.

I could be wrong about the red. Black actually makes more sense for someone his age. He ought not be buying red cars. Time to settle down. Sure thing Gloria never will. Gave Lona a fit growing up and still has to run down here every time you turn around to cry on her momma’s shoulder. Seems to me Lona would get mighty tired of it. I would. And Kirk, I know he does. But Lona never says a word.

Doggone if I don’t think that tag is out-of-state. But, Lord knows, can’t go by that. Used to, car tags were two colors and they all looked alike. Convicts made them at Central Prison. Maybe they still do. Got to ask someone about that. Maybe Jimmy Junior when he comes by this afternoon. Thinks he knows everything anyhow. Always has. Reckon that’s why he elected to be a lawyer. Wanted him to be a preacher like his daddy but, then, preachers think they know everything, too. I can testify to that. More times than one, told him to save his sermons for the pulpit.

Can’t tell much from that car tag. They got so much mess on them now you can’t even read the numbers much less make out what state they are from. Ought to go back to orange and black or black and orange. State went back and forth on that every year so you could tell this year’s from last year’s. Now, that’s something that made sense.

Police could read them if some fool tried to rob a bank like those boys over in Midway. Sheriff had handcuffs on’m in 30 minutes. Down at Hauser’s body shop repainting the getaway car red. They were painting it red! Now that wouldn’t draw attention, would it? Brand new red car in Midway. Now black. That would have made sense. Just like Kirk buying a black car would make sense.

Nobody pays attention to a black car except maybe me if it’s parked over yonder at Lona’s. Reckon eventually I will get so blind I can’t even see if there is anything in Lona’s driveway. Won’t be able to tell a John Deere from a Mercedes Benz. Halfway there now. Won’t that be fun? Ruby sitting here, half blind reading a big-lettered Bible, listening to the TV and sucking on a peppermint.

My young’uns won’t care. That’s for sure. Only thing they care about is what’s in my will. I can tell’m right now. Surprises! Except for Jimmy Junior. At least he’s done a little something to make his momma proud and sends a Mother’s Day card and comes by and checks once in a while.

Carroll Leggett was an attorney and public relations professional who now writes primarily about the American south, its food, and foodways.

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