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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of “A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush” (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (01/10/08)

TITLE: A Deer in the Truck
By Paul Swann


I topped the crest of the Celeste Road overpass spanning Interstate 65 in my mother's blue 1977 Pontiac station wagon and was nearly blinded by the lights from the newly built 7-11 convenience store.

Despite the annoying lights, the whole neighborhood was proud to have this little store finally here after having been rumored for so long. And never mind that Delchamps, a full service grocer, was less than a mile to the east up Celeste Road. It did not have the real conveniences that mattered most: gas and pinball.

Despite the lack of pinball, I went to Delchamps for this errand. A few hours earlier rain had soaked the streets, which were still sufficiently slippery.

With my attention drawn to the floodlights from the 7-11 store, I didn't see the approximately 120 pound doe (hereinafter “Bambi”) lying in the middle of Celeste Road.

Nothing gets your attention like something unexpected in the road on a dark rainy night.

In the nanoseconds that followed, I realized what it was - lying there in the road.

Of course, Bambi’s eyes froze as the approaching Pontiac illuminated her face; state law requires it.

Unfortunately for her, her body did not stay frozen. She bolted to her right. With a 50/50 chance of avoiding disaster, I chose wrongly, swerved to my left where, not coincidentally, the Pontiac and the deer met.

As Bambi and the Pontiac met, I nearly drove off the embankment to the north side of Celeste Road and came to rest on the aforementioned Bambi.

Fortunately, for the Pontiac, the damage was minimal; but for the Bambi, umm, life would not be quite the same.

OK, life would not be life at all.

But, for two resourceful locals hanging out at the 7-11 (probably playing pinball) this would be their lucky day.

When Bambi and the Pontiac met, there was a noise. This thud carried through the summer air the 300 yards to the 7-11.

The scared 17-year-old driver – that’d be me – shaking from the trauma, but better off than the Bambi, sped home – all of two blocks.

The pinball dudes took note.

I garnered enough stamina to return to the 7-11 a few minutes later, looked up toward the overpass and spotted the pinball wizards lifting the Bambi into the back of their pick up truck.

Why bother going into the woods hunting for Bambis when one has been provided for — right up the road?

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Member Comments
Member Date
Yvonne Blake 01/20/08
Ohhhhhhh! Poor Bambi!
I got a little distracted by all the road names and numbers.
Good job... keep writing
Hanne Moon 01/22/08
The only thing that really struck me (and if this is a true story, then all I can say is that deer came from the bottom of the gene pool) is that a wild deer wouldn't be laying in the middle of the road. Standing, caught in the headlights maybe, but not laying down. I've never seen one do that. Again, anything can happen, but if your reader doesn't believe in something you wrote, then you've lost your audience. Sometimes you have to fudge on real life to make it more engaging and something the reader can relate to. I wouldn't mention road names so much, once is enough. Your use of description and humor did well, and I encourage you to keep writing!
Lynn Jacky 01/24/08
I live in a rural area and have some unusal animal stories of my own. A great story kept my interest all the way through. You kept the spacing good and it was easy to read. Keep up the good writing.