Capt. Buttface and Stinky Green David

We previously told the a tale of a fateful trip, that started from this tropic port, aboard this tiny ship.


Sorry. Wrong mental tape.

THIS is the previous tale we told – Capt. Buttface and the Lake Waco Moon Cricket.

And this is the sequel…


People who make their living at boat docks tend to be a special breed, a breed usually involving very close cousins.

That was almost certainly the case at Elmer’s boat dock on Lake Waco.

Elmer was at least 900 years old. He’d owned his marina and boat dock since before God invented water. He was doubtless a rich man.

Because in the miserable Central Texas summer, if you wanted a business with cash flow, you sold cold beer, cigarettes, fuel and bait.

Elmer did just that. Plus hooks, line, rods, sheer pins, screws. You name it.

He could also arrange for your sailboat or powerboat to be lifted from muddy Lake Waco, and left on a sling while repairs were done. If Elmer liked you, and he liked Capt. Buttface, you could leave your boat high and dry for weeks on end.

At peak boating and fishing season, Capt. Buttface — a young writer/editor for the Waco Tribune-Herald — always managed to publish a good word or two hundred about the Lake Waco Marina.

That made Elmer happy enough to allow the bright yellow Moon Cricket — aka the “Death Boat”, so named because she’d killed her previous owner —  to rest in a sling forever and for free.

So repairing her hull was affordable for the Captain and his merry band of poor journalists, including me. All it required was sandpaper, fiberglass, horrifically toxic ozone depleting chemicals, elbow grease and beer.

Lots of Beer

And since Elmer sold us he beer, he still did all right even with his rent-free sling for the Moon Cricket.

Being 900 years old, Elmer tended to stay inside the marina, enjoying the air conditioning and overcharging tourists for sheer pins and propellers.

For the truly miserable summer grunt work, like pumping fuel, water blasting boats and shoveling up all kinds of foul smelling puss, you needed a big ol’ farm boy, deep in the chest and thick in the head.

You needed someone like David.

Geneologically speaking, David was almost certainly the progeny of the love of many cousins. Going way back. Probably to Arkansas.

Overalls were his Lake Waco Marina uniform, always featuring a unique mixture of axle grease, diesel fuel and rotten catfish bait.

David probably made good money for Waco, at least 25 cents an hour more than minimum wage, because Elmer could trust him to do any rotten, dirty, filthy job that needed doing.

Elmer’s could be a helluva busy place. Especially during “rush hour”, when the city fellers filled their gas tanks and ice chests, burning through money so they could get onto the lake for a few hours of fishing and skiing before the cancer-causing sun went down.

Evening at Elmer’s

But around dusk, that dock was as peaceful a place as there is on God’s green Earth. It was on one of those evenings that we sort of fell into Elmer’s, and this story took place.

We’d spent the whole miserable day refiberglassing the Moon Cricket’s belly. We were sunburned, gritty, epoxied, pissed off and dead-ass tired.

We were in dire need of hydration, in the form of cheap, cold beer. Not beer from the customer fridge, but the REALLY COLD beer from the back. The beer for special customers.

By the time the sun had almost set, we’d cooled way down and spent several hours talking about fishin’, the weather, women, and other things that men folk talk about at a marina.

As always, Capt. Buttface did about 90% of the talking, because he was as good a talker as he was a newspaper man. The rest of us would throw in now and again, with a joke or an insult, but mainly it was the Capt. Buttface show.

But when the conversation turned to hunting, Ol’ David came alive. Seems he was a huntin’ man, from a long line of huntin’ men.

And, come to find out, David was a champeen stalker. Quieter than a cheetah cat. Smarter than a fox. Deadlier than a lion. Or so he said. And he aimed to prove it to us.

David gazed at the 100 or so wild geese feeding in the high grass next to the marina. He bragged that, with his ninja cheetah cat lion skills, he could silently sneak up and catch a goose.

With his bare hands.

Cheetah Cat Stalking

His exact words, as I recall, were: “Ah’ll grab me a fuggin goose, you jes waiten see.”

We all laughed at him, even Elmer, which got David all riled up. His manhood had been questioned. So he assumed the position of a stealth ninja hunter. In overalls. And he commenced to stalk the geese.

Knowing this was going to be good, we all grabbed another beer and kind of hunkered down, dead quiet. 

David might have looked a bit like a young Ernest T. Bass from the Andy Griffith Show, but, despite his overalls and heavy work boots, he was surprisingly nimble. He slid methodically through the grass, in sort of a half crouch.

It must have taken David five agonizingly long minutes to halve the 30 yards to the flock of geese.

Don’t Move!

None of us had moved an inch. We were entranced — drinking beer, stifling laughter and watching a ninja country boy in overalls creeping ever closer to a flock of wild animals that have been stalked for centuries by creatures far brighter than David.

Geese had not survived by being stupid. They had developed acute senses and a brilliant natural defense against predators.

David only had his wits. Bwahaha.

The odds favored the geese.

And, finally, it was the moment of truth.

David went absolutely still to catch his breath. He prepared to pounce. Like a cheetah cat or a lion or something.

And when he leaped, all hell broke loose.

In my mind, that moment in time is frozen. It’s as if I had a wall-sized, National Geographic color photo taken at EXACTLY the perfect time.

If that photo had sound, you would hear a hundred terrified geese flapping their huge powerful wings against the heavy air.  It was like a military helicopter was taking off right over our heads.

If the photo had a scent, it would smell like the foulest, dirtiest, filthiest most fetid latrine in all of India.

And that photo would show David, about half a second after he had pounced, like a cheetah cat or a lion or something. 

Right after thousands of years of DNA had told the panicked geese to take flight and dump their bowels onto the enemy, creating an impenetrable  explosion of monsoon green goose shit.

All of which landed right on David, who just stood there, arms at his side, dripping with gooey green goose shit.

And on his face, an expression that so eloquently said, “Huh?”

Those of us who had been privileged to watch this once-in-a-lifetime show died of laughter that night.

We were on the ground. Unable to breathe, from the time David pounced to when he waddled to the edge of the dock, sort of fell into Lake Waco and began treading water, for the longest time, as the green goose shit on his overalls slowly dissolved.

And a new chapter in the Great Tale of Capt. Buttface had been writ.



6 Responses to “Capt. Buttface and Stinky Green David”

  1. J-P says:

    I have to go to bed now – Nothing else will top that today!

  2. Lillian L. says:

    Guess the times in Waco have a different slant with the years.
    ROTFLMAO, after ten minutes.
    Good one little brother!

  3. Kris says:

    Awwww, babe?

    You just made my whole fucking day.


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