By Jerry Craven
In his artwork of telling tales, Craven balances timing, rhythm, type, and content material. His kind is right now dependent and straightforward, a mix of up-tempo phraseology and short tale strains that movement clearly to at least one of 3 conclusions: punchline, ethical, or want. The tales percentage observations on customs, language, domestic, and human nature and function a hedge opposed to parochialism, even if targeting snipe hunts, armadillo grabs, and hog boxing. Whimsically illustrated by way of Jean Dixon and recognizable to readers anyplace, Tickling Catfish deals new, fresh, or would-be Texans a contented significant other of their quest for complete Texas citizenship.
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Extra info for Tickling Catfish: A Texan Looks At Culture From Amarillo To Borneo (Wardlaw Book)
Culture shock in Canyon hit me, a native of East Texas, with a barrage of Stetsons, "do-whuts," and bizarre expressions. When Pat Sullivan drove me to campus from the airport, we arrived while classes were in session, so I saw few students. After interviewing with English department members, I wandered over to the student unionagain while classes were in session. At a table close to mine sat three students wearing outrageous costumes. I decided they had to be from the drama department, taking a break from a dress rehearsal for a play.
I'll admit to being a native Texan, to having lived in South, East, and West Texas. Most funny things in this world, for me, seem to be Texan, especially seen against a backdrop of other cultures. I've been a redneck construction worker (a plumber) and a professor, a Page x ditchdigger and a scholar scratching around in libraries. Plumbers make more money than professors, though they aren't any less funny. But this book isn't about plumbing or professoring. It's about culture, Texan and otherwise.
We seen this black snake and a rattler. " A Good Bluff Can Cure Ignorance "A coon mule learns faster than a dawg," Mike told me. I had no idea what a coon mule might be. A stumpy, long-eared hybrid of a raccoon and a possum, maybe? But I said nothing, for around Texas country boys you never admit ignorance, or so Sam Pakan once assured me. "Cowboys bluff a lot," Sam said. When one of them knows something the others do not, they raise their brows, nod, and purse their lips in sage ways. Sometimes they cut their eyes at one another in silent, hostile challenges.