Reminiscin’ with Jenny: Buzzards and Polecats

Buzzards and Polecats


I was driving down the road just at dusk, when out of the corn field marched mama polecat (skunk). She was followed by her six little ones. Swerving to miss them, my left front tire caught mama by the tail and before I knew it I had run over the mama and three of her babies. The other three managed to make it to safety and quickly scampered down the bank.


I stopped the car and as I looked in the rearview mirror, there was a terrible sight in the middle of the road! Black and white fur was everywhere! I kept waiting for the smell but there was none. Oh well, I thought, I just helped out the polecat population explosion by eliminating four of them.


A couple days later I was driving down the same country road on my way to church, when I saw a buzzard perched on a fence post, then I saw another and another. I thought, maybe it was time for the local buzzard convention.


My sense of smell kicked in and the stench was unbearable. It permeated every inch of the car. I remembered about the polecats, that met their demise as a result of my erratic driving. I rounded the corner six more buzzards sat in the middle of the road feasting upon a plateful of dead polecat.


Each one of them had a white streak that covered half their face and down their breasts. They looked a little strange and out of place, I wondered how could they eat something that smelled so bad. The closer I got the worse the smell got and it was, then I discovered the buzzards were wearing their dinner napkins, ‘cowboy style’ and that’s how they were able to avoid the smell.


Moral of the story: where there is a will there is a way!!! and that ‘s it for today.


Reminiscin’ with Jenny



A Squirrel, A Sack and A Name

I Grew up in the state of Tennessee, the county of Johnson, the city of Mountain City, and the hamlets of Dewey and Doe Valley. We lived way out in the country about five miles from town…

My story begins when I was born on a place called Shupetown Road. My paternal grandmother was a midwife. She was also a medicine woman and used a lot of herbs and old wives tales for practicing her doctoring. She was born and raised in a place called Old Butler which is under Watauga Lake today. In her midwifery duties she delivered or helped to deliver lots of babies including four of my siblings. Today it is not uncommon to run into people she delivered.

On the morning I was born my father had gotten up early, grabbed his gun, a flour sack in which to carry his catch and set off to go squirrel hunting in the woods back of our place. He had been able to bag a squirrel and he carried it home in that sack.


When he came through the door, his mother rushed up to him and said, “Roy, you just had a brand new baby girl, what are you going to call her? He looked at the sack with the squirrel and looked at me and said, Virginia Rose”. That’s the story of how I got my name from a sack of flour.


And in the words of my Father, That’s it for Today,

Reminiscin’ with Jenny

I would like to introduce my cousin Jenny. She is on the Robinson’s side of the tree and I’m on the Adam’s side. We are adding her as a guest blogger.


Jenny’s blog will be called “Reminiscin’ with Jenny,” including a wide variety of topics centering on family stories, family recipes and genealogy.


Jenny Johnson Manuel is a published freelance writer who loves to reminisce about growing up in Johnson County Tennessee during the fifties and sixties. She is also an avid genealogist. She claims kin to over 40,000 entries in her genealogy database.