The Life of Bob: Part One

I

THE MODERN HIGHWAYMAN

Modern highwayman have it hard. I use the singular instead of the plural because, as far as I know (and probably a bit further), there is only one person who is still in the profession. His name is…[cue triumphant music]… BOB! He was a secluded hippie in the eighties and he was really into it—oversized clothes, hair down to his toes, etc., but then he read a book. His life was utterly changed and he became aware of a whole other world than his own. He reasoned that, since all his hippie overlords ordered him to never read anything (especially travelogs, math books, or Utopia) that they must be trying to shield him from knowledge of the real world, a glorious world, a world that Bob just knew he had to be a part of. He was especially intrigued by these people called “highwaymen” who robbed rich travelers on the road. Since he hated the rich, he decided to become a highwayman.

He got a big trenchcoat and a hat just like what he saw in the pictures in the book, then he got a small club and headed out into the real world ready for adventure. Now, he had studied carefully the methods of the highwaymen in the book he’d read, and he was confident when he came to a road and lay in ambush for the first person to travel by. He saw the dust of an approaching carriage, and he leapt up when it was near.

“Stop there!” he cried. “Your money or your life!”
The carriage went right past him at 70mph without even pausing.

“Halt! Come back I say, or you’ll regret it. Your money! Your money or… your life…” Bob tapered off and stomped on the ground in frustration. “What did I do wrong?” He decided to accept the situation stoically, which is surprising only because he had never come into contact with any sort of philosophy, much less one with a real name and all. But I digress.

Now, getting on with my incredibly clever and revealing work of a masterpiece. Bob decided that he would build a barrier so that his prey could not pass by without stopping. He started with several threads taken from his socks and tied to trees, but he soon discovered that old and battered yarn could not stop one of the automatic carriages that used this particular road. He thought about using all his clothes to make a stronger rope. However, his brain decided to release a rare bit of intelligence and he didn’t. Instead, he, himself, Bob, him, the-man-who-tried-to-be-a-highwayman-in-the-twentieth-century, stood in the middle of the road and brandished his cudgel.

The first car just curved around Bob and went on its way. The driver of the second thought he was looking at Sasquatch and swerved off the road, through a fence, over several small trees of the town mayor’s apple orchard, and finally crashed into the newspaper building, where he tried to get them to dispatch an investigative reporter to that area where he’d seen Sasquatch, but no one believed him. They said something about a faint smell of alcohol in his breath. Ridiculous!

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Published in: on September 20, 2009 at 6:18 PM  Leave a Comment  

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