Ponderings with Doug – April 6, 2018


Easter Sunday we celebrated the resurrection of Christ four times. We had three morning services and a bi-lingual service at 1:00 p.m. My bride went home between the later services because she was having a jelly bean craving. The truth is more likely that she didn’t want to hear me preach, again! She said she was standing at the kitchen sink munching on the colorful sugar delivery system eggs when she noticed movement in the yard. She saw two goats walking past the window.

Seeing goats in Natchitoches is an unexpected sight. These goats were in an unexpected place. She was horrified to see the goats. They were being kept in our backyard. They were borrowed goats.

Saturday our carport was filled with people. I’m not sure of the names of half the people who were at our house on Saturday. It was our annual Easter crawfish boil. I bless you folks who love boiled crawfish. I don’t get it. I like my crawfish in a casserole, bisque or etouffee. I have done the math there is a caloric deficit between energy expended to get to the meat and calories in the meat. I cook real meat for the non-crawfish eaters. Hamburgers, hot dogs, sausage and grilled jalapeños are my assignment.

We knew that at least eleven children would be visiting on Saturday. Two of the eleven were our grandsons. So we bought chicks. We borrowed rabbits and goats. I wanted a cow, but the request was vetoed by the woman who holds 51% of the votes in my life. The kids had a blast. I think the chicks were the favorites. The adults kept going to the back yard to look at the goats. I heard more than one child pose the question, “Why can’t we have chicks at our house?”

Both goats had collars and could be walked like one walks a dog. They “came” to you when you called, “Come here goat.” On Easter Sunday afternoon my bride and I walked them around the neighborhood. We found out that goats do walk on their knees. They also enjoyed some of the dry leaves in the yards. They were soothing to be around.

Oh yes, the story I was telling you.

The goats escaped from the backyard. They followed the same path the dogs use to get out. My bride panicked. She didn’t want the goats to get in the street. She didn’t want someone to drive by and get her goats. She needed to herd the goats to the backyard, but she has no goat herding experience. She found out these two very domesticated goats like following human beings. She led them slowly back into the fence and repaired the escape route.

The goats were very laid back.

“Getting someone’s goat” is an idiomatic way of saying they are upset over something.

It seems the etymological folklorists talk about goats being kept with racing horses to keep them calm. If you wanted and advantage over a rival horse, you would get their goat, thus upsetting the race-horse. Might be a myth but it sounds right.

Nothing upset the goats, not big people or little people, not even the grand-dog. They were content to hang out in a strange yard and eat the roses and the leaves off of the rosebush. We enjoyed them very much, except for my bride who has earned the official title of “Goat-herder.”

So friends, “What gets your goat?” Or did your goat find a way to escape?