When Uncle Kracker comes to town

Uncle Buck has been out digging goeyducks from the mud and Sister Tater has been out on the rolling seas, hauling in the big ‘uns. Looks like fun, doesn’t it? Only when I talked with Sister Tater about this, she didn’t mention the big fish as much as she did the big swells — some 15-20 feet swells. Tater said the boat was rockin’ & rollin’.

I was dealing with my own version of rockin’ & rollin’ — a sold out concert for Uncle Kracker.

Who’s Uncle Kracker?

Some fella who wears black t-shirts and baggy jeans. You’d think I’d be best friends with him since his first release was called “Double Wide.” All I know is that the crowd last night loves this man.

I’ve been at the concerts this week, volunteering, selling tickets and helping supervise the Hermiston High Leadership Team who has been working their behinneys off, ushering folks in the reserved seating.

There weren’t any tickets left to sell since Uncle Kracker has been sold out for a week or two now, so last night was simply about making sure the ushers got folks to their right seats since in a sold-out concert people expect to have  seat.

Keep in mind this is a county fair so there is plenty of beer being consumed. Drink enough beer and pretty soon you’re going to do or say something stupid.

You can’t fix stupid but you can ask it to leave.

That’s exactly what security did when the big burly fellow tried to get into the reserved seating area without a ticket.

“Hey, I’m deploying to Iraq on Monday,” the fellow bellowed. “Lemme have a seat.”

“If you’re deploying to Iraq on Monday,” said the security gal, “then you ought to be at home with your family instead of out here getting wasted.”

Then she asked Stupid to leave. How sorry is that? she asked. Trying to exploit his military service that way.


The stories I could tell her.

But she was off and running, there was another Stupid standing on the cattle guard railings near the stage.



Three times.

Then she threw that Stupid out.

He wouldn’t go.

So she called for police escort. Then he left but not before lighting a cigarette and blowing smoke in her face.

Another well-dressed Stupid muscled his way through the crowd and presented me with what he hoped would be an entrance to reserved seating.

Sorry, Stupid but these are rodeo tickets.

These are good for the concert, he insisted.

No, sir. They’re good for the rodeo. Not the concert.

Just beyond the reserved seating area, people were packed like jar peaches, flesh pressing in on unfamiliar flesh. It’s a good thing it was dark because it’s best not to see some of that.

I wish somebody would explain to me how White Trash got to be a fashion fad. I didn’t get a picture of it but one fella wore a t-shirt that read “Genius by birth, Slacker by choice.”  Trust me, the kind of person who dons that t-shirt in public doesn’t need the advertisement. I never thought I’d say this but I’m beginning to miss the days when grannies wore housedresses and hosiery rolled at the kneecaps. At least everything was covered up in little calico flowers.

The worst moment of the entire week came last night as I escorted a couple to their seats. Somebody was sitting in them already. A couple of kids. I asked to see their tickets and their mama, sitting in the row ahead of them says to me, “Why do you need to see the tickets? This is where the ushers sat us.”

“No,” I said. “The ushers would not have sat you in the wrong seats and these seats belong to this couple. Can I see your tickets please?”

Oh. Brother. You’d have thought I was performing a strip search on  her the way she began ranting.

“What’s your name?” she yelled. “Why are you being so rude?”

I’d simply asked the lady for her tickets so that I could make sure everyone was in the seat that corresponded with the ticket.

“Who are you?” she screamed. “My mother runs this fair! Go call my mother!”

Keep in mind this gal was old enough to know better but did it anyway.  She pitched an absolutely hissy fit, right there in front of God and Uncle Kracker.

The thing is, I didn’t care if her mama ran the World’s Fair. I don’t get paid enough to be abused. I walked off and got the security guard who then helped her produce the tickets and as I suspected, she was sitting in the seats she wanted to sit in — not the ones that corresponded with her tickets.


Like I was saying, you can’t fix Stupid but you can ask it to move to the right seat.

The next time Uncle Kracker and I get together I hope it’s on a boat, hauling in fish with Sister Tater.  We’ll talk about how he came up with the songs for Double Wide and I’ll tell him how I found the stories for Will Jesus Buy Me a Double-Wide?

Until then, though, it seems even the vehicles around here have to have their say about something. I’d stick around to chat with you more about the sorry state of our country but there’s men in white shirts and black ties knocking at my door. I don’t know if they are Jehovah Witnesses or the FBI. But if you don’t hear from me anymore just assume they came to haul me away.

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