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skymike 08-23-2010 04:41 PM

You Should Go See the Boggy Creek Monster
So, I just got back from the Vacation From Hell. I HATE video games... I hate in-car television thingy's ... I hate PSPs, PS2s, PS-867-5309, whatever... When I was a kid, we looked out the damn window. What the hell is wrong with kids now? They have zero interest in anything real or useful... If its not on a screen playing cartoony music...nothing.... "Hey look, there's mount rushmore out your right window" ..... crickets....
I refuse to take the kids anywhere anymore, unless they ditch those damn stupid gadgets and join me in my world.

Thank God for the Boggy Creek Monster. I've been trying for years to find time to stop by Fouke, AR, and so we did, at my behest, with my wife's lovingkindness, and found ourselves at the "Monster Mart," with the "monster" mural, and the "monster" newspaper clippings , and taking our pictures on the "monster" cutout thing, where you put your face in the circle, and you take your picture. So I'm standing at the counter, talking to the little girl with the monster t-shirt, and I ask her where Smoky Crabtree's store is, when the old man next to me asks, "You're looking for Smoky Crabtree?" Well, anyone who's ever watched Scooby Doo, will KNOW what the next line is in this episode. Lets rewind:

ME: "Do you know where Smoky Crabtree's store is?"
YOUNG GIRL BEHIND COUNTER: (tentative silence)
OLD MAN: "You're looking for Smoky Crabtree?"
ME: "Yes sir."
OLD MAN: "Well you're talking to him."

I can't make this stuff up.

Smokey Crabtree, for those you who lack The Force, is the leading authority on the Boggy Creek Monster, near Fouke Arkansas. His son saw it in broad daylight, and Smokey has written books, as well as appeard in The Legend of Boggy Creek, a movie which caused me to not go into the woods for a month, out of fear.

The Legend of Boggy Creek came out in 73? working from memory here. Google, of course will give you details I'm forgetting. Here's what happened: Several times from the 50s on, local people in this way out of the way little place in the woods, saw a Bigfoot like creature, before anybody there had ever heard of Bigfoot, so its not like they stole the idea-- you must realize they barely get cellphone coverage now, so this place was isolated.

In 1970, he got really active--- ate some pigs, terrorized some dogs, and after scattered sightings by hunters and drivers, got bold enough to visit some families in their houses at night, attacking one guy who had shot at him--- and this guy ended up hospitalized with minor injuries. Call it a publicity stunt if you like, but a pair of young families were serious enough about the monster, that they left. Sheriffs deputies documented the scenes.

Perhaps it was a slow newsday, but a young reporter at the Shreveport Times picked up on the story and submitted it to the AP, who surprisingly RAN it on their nationwide wire, and the legend took off. A couple years later a minor league movie maker came by, and the movie became a cult classic.

Anyway, if would have been enough that Smokey politely agreed to talk to my kids and pose for a picture, before enjoying the pizza he just ordered, with his wife, but he then adds, If we'll wait a "few minutes," (10? 45?) he'll go over and open the store for us. He then gives me rural directions, which omit proper nouns, street addresses, and include "Two churches, a graveyard, and a T-intersection." His "about six miles north," turned out to be an exact measurement. I drive down the road solely on faith.

The store, is, if you havent guessed, a museum with monster memorabilia, but also much of his amazing life accomplishments, from being a boxing champion, to hunting and fishing trophies, to his war experience, to his wildly decorated welding truck, to his books, cd's and souvenirs. He also sells second hand books, and a thousand more things I wish I had more time to look over. Smoky welded the first weld in the Alaska Pipeline. He holds regional records for beaver, boar, and gar. The list goes on.

I wanted to stay longer, but he had just turned the AC on in the store, and If I am a bit warm, I know everyone else is suffering, so I did my best to keep our visit brief.

He signed books for my kids, and gave my daughter eerily astute advice. I left them my cell number, should they be confounded by Houston traffic, while visiting their children. He was amazingly nice, despite my outed relation to The News, and our city-fied appearance. Ive never been so ashamed to be driving a (rented) mini-van, but he was friendly anyway.

I saw one other thing, which I swore to silence, due to my media affiliation.

And there is your campfire story for tonight.

bru ha ha ha....
pictures to come.

homerj07 09-25-2010 10:29 PM

F-cken awesome skymike.

That movie scared the she-ite out me.

Then I had to go stay with my uncle in McComb Miss - which is like 20 or 30 miles away from Boggy Creek & I was sleeping on a screened in porch. I was freaking out every ight waiting for the damn thing to show!

skymike 09-27-2010 06:44 AM

i know what you mean, homer. i was 10, and wouldnt go in the woods for a month.

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