|George Buster Singleton|
(For decades, local historian and paranormal investigator George “Buster” Singleton published a weekly newspaper column called “Somewhere in Time.” The column below, which was titled “When all else fails, send for Augusta Jill” was originally published in the Sept. 27, 1990 edition of The Monroe Journal in Monroeville, Ala.)
This is a copy of a letter from our friend Fonderoy Fishue to Uncle Sam, wanting to know why he hasn’t been asked to give advice on the Middle East crisis, since almost everyone else has.
Dear Uncle Sam:
I take pen in hand to write and tell you how put out the trouble that our country is having in that camel-riding country they call Iraq. I have been watching the world news on Augusta Jill’s new television. (I bought my sweet thing a television for her birthday.)
I am amazed as to the many people that don’t know doodelum squat about them people and the way they live out there in all of that sand. I’m not sure, but I think almost everyone has given their opinion about this little jack-leg country and that fellow they call Saddam.
Every time I see him on my baby’s television, he is holding his right arm up. You don’t suppose that he might be deformed or something like that, do you, Uncle Sam? I know that he has trouble putting on his britches with his arm up in the air like that all the time. No wonder he goes around with that ugly look on his face.
That’s another thing I noticed about friend Saddam; his mouth is on one side of his face. I guess that is the reason he grows that mustache, so it will cover that round hole he calls his mouth. I guess he’s got a reason to be shy – walking around with his sick arm up in the air and then having all them people looking at his mouth. I guess there could be some benefit in having your mouth on the side of your head like that; you could hear what you were chewing.
Take battling stick
I’m not trying to tend to your business, Uncle Sam, but if you followed my advice it would save us citizens quite a bit of money. You could draft my Augusta Jill in the Army and send her over there to take care of that Saddam fellow. She wouldn’t even need a gun; she could carry her battling stick that she uses to stir the boiling clothes in that big wash pot.
By the time she got through beating his head with that battling stick, he could probably take his arm down. Might even help his mouth, too. Augusta Jill can get mighty fired up when somebody starts bad-mouthing our country. I feel sure that she would volunteer if you talked just right.
If you decide to have a contest and look for a name for this little problem with Iraq and that fellow they call Saddam, I would sure like a try at giving it a name. I don’t want you to tell anyone just yet, because I might win first prize, that is, if you do have a contest.
I’d name this little disturbance “The Jaw-bone War.” You might not understand this, Uncle Sam, but more jaw-bone muscle has been used talking about them people out there in all that sand than all the other muscles that had been used put together.
Stray cats in sand
If you decide not to send my Augusta Jill over there, Uncle Sam, I had another thought that might even be easier in getting rid of that odd-looking fellow. Me and my cousin, Penrod, (I wrote you about cousin Penrod) was talking about all that sand, and we kinda thought that since there’s not a lot of water over there, and them people don’t bathe too often, you could have use citizens catch up all the stray cats and fly them over there and put them out.
With little or no effort, another airplane could fly over that place they call Baghdad, or something like that, and drop a few buckets full of some kind of evil-smelling catnip. Uncle Sam, them cats would have that whole place covered up in no time at all. With all that sand there, them cats would have a field day.
Just think, the Jaw-bone War would be over and not a shot fired. I bet that would be a sight, all them men trying to run from them cats while dressed up in them bed sheets. I guess they wear them bed sheets so all that sand won’t blow in their pockets when they are out there looking for their camels. And all they have to do is to just shake the sheet a little when they want to get the sand out.
I know that you are a busy man, Uncle Sam, with all those goings-on over there in that place they call Iraq. I thought that I would write and give you some ideas on the situation so as to make your job easier. I feel sure that Augusta Jill will do what she can if you see fit to use her. (Augusta Jill could put the hurt on that Saddam with that battling stick if she could catch him with his sheet up.)
She said that I ought to be a general or something, knowing all about using them cats. She said that only a genius would have thought about that. (I don’t want to take any credit, but I kinda think it would be a smart move, especially with all that sand just laying around over there.)
I look forward to hearing from you soon, Uncle Sam. If I can further be of use, my knowledge is at your service. I am your faithful citizen,
P.S. I often wonder how them desert men ride them camels with them bed sheets on and not catch their death of cold?
(Singleton, the author of the 1991 book “Of Foxfire and Phantom Soldiers,” passed away at the age of 79 on July 19, 2007. A longtime resident of Monroeville, he was born on Dec. 14, 1927 in Marengo County and served as the administrator of the Monroeville National Guard unit from 1964 to 1987. He is buried in Pineville Cemetery in Monroeville. The column above and all of Singleton’s other columns are available to the public through the microfilm records at the Monroe County Public Library in Monroeville. Singleton’s columns are presented here each week for research and scholarship purposes and as part of an effort to keep his work and memory alive.)