SELF-LOGO THREE****Screenshot from 2013-12-08 21:56:39


There was nothing to be done

but take the supplies into the tent

and sleep with them there –

four men and a wood stove. I

decided it was time to start drinking

in earnest, so I wouldn’t have to

listen too closely to the tall tales

these guys were starting to tell.

(You stay in the bush too long

and you start laughing about

diferent things than what you

usually find funny. You start

imagining things. You even

imagine all your jokes are



By 8:00 P.M. it had been dark

three hours, so everybody slipped

into their sleeping bags.

In another hour I was

in the bag, as they say, because I

was drinking authentic Canadian Rye

Whisky. And thank God for it,

because people were really telling

the stories now.


My undertaker opens the discussion

by asking me if I know what they make

womens’ perfume out of.

“Why no,” I reply. “But I’m sure

you’re going to tell me.”

“Beaver balls!” he says. “Damn right!”

(As if I were questioning his integrity.)

“Yep, great big vats of nothing but

beaver balls… you go to a fur auction and

see if I’m not right!”

Could this be true, I wonder, or is this

man pulling my leg? I quaff another beer

and crunch up the can, tossing it into

the corner of the tent. It hits the


“Also, whale sperm,” says Joe.

“You mean sperm whales, don’t

you?” I asked.

“No, whale sperm,” says Joe,

perfectly deadpan.

“Jesus! You guys have been

in the bush too long!”


The subject of the sources

of womens’ perfume continued

for some time, but what was said is

not fit for women, child, nor dog.

(Nor would the editors print it.)

Unfortunately your roving reporter

had to hear it all, all the gruesome

details of how perfume is extracted

from poor unsuspecting



One day some months before this,

I had motored across the lake and started

trolling in the weeds. I caught two nice

pike and went back to the camp.

Joe was from Manitoulin Island.

Walt was from New Jersey. So I say to

Joe: “Joe, do you want to clean these

fish for lunch?”

Joe says, “No, I was raised on fish.”

So I turn to Walt: “Hey, Walt! Do you

want to clean these fish?”

Walt says: “No, I was raised on



Walt knew nothing about the bush

at all. And being the only camp in about

seven miles, building the only cabin on

a two mile lake, well, Walt was out

of his depth. So Joe was enjoying

himself at Walt’s expense.

The last week Joe had told

Walt that bears want revenge upon

the human race.


“Bears have studied sociology

and they’re mad as hell,” Joe had

told him. Walt believed him. He

had a little trouble sleeping

nights after his talks with Joe.

So when a few days later

the bears actually did attack

the camp and ripped it in half

and took everything that was

edible and most things that

were not, Walt ran off in

a hurry. He climbed to the top of

a tree some distance away and he

wouldn’t come down.

When Joe was able to coax

Walt down out of the tree…much later

when Walt got hungry, Joe told him

that the bears had been planning

the raid for days.


Walt believed that, too.

2016-03-17 00.11.24 (2).jpg JOE BEBONING, WALT, LAUGHING BEARS


(C)2016 by W.G. Milne

Caricature sketches by Ernie Taylor



  1. Reblogged this on THE DAILY RANT and commented:

    Paddy Stories —- this is @MORTICIAN’S HUMOUR 1

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