Don't Try To Save The Goat!
Patricia A. Gibson
Position at WFBMC:
Associate Professor, Director, Epilepsy Information Service
Place of birth:
Where you grew up:
University of Virginia, University of Tennessee
"When I was younger, I could remember anything whether it happened or not."
- Mark Twain
"You can't have everything, where would you put it?"
- Steven Wright
Patricia A. Gibson
I was already late for work when I decided to make a run to the post office to mail a Christmas package I had been carrying around far too long. I was driving on Mountain Street in Kernersville and almost at the post office when I glanced to my right. I did a double take as standing there, in the middle of a parking lot, was a brown goat staring right back at me. “Whoa, that’s a goat!” I exclaimed out loud. And surely lost, I thought to myself. I looked closer and saw that it had a collar with a dangling bell. Somebody loved that goat. For a few seconds, I had the struggling debate…keep on going or stop and try to help it. I was already running late and surely someone else would help it but then again, what if it walked into the street and got hit by a car? My good side finally won out so I quickly whipped my car into the lot hoping not to scare it. Then reality set in and it occurred to me, “what in the world would I do with the goat?” Maybe I should call the police, I thought. One half of me was frantically going through my briefcase, trying to find my cell phone, tossing things out left and right while the other half of me was trying to make friendly with the goat. What do you even say to a goat? I rolled down my window and tried, “Come here little goatie goat, come here”, holding out my hand and clicking a little just in case. To my utter surprise, it wagged its tail and trotted right over like a sweet little puppy. I noticed then it even had a metal wreath attached to its collar with “Merry Christmas” engraved on it. For sure, someone really loved this little goat! I grabbed its collar and was still sweet-talking it, all the while wondering what the police would do with it. It hit me then, I just needed to call my sister, the animal whisperer. She would know exactly what to do. She was always rescuing little animals. I could put it in my car. Yes, that would work. (Hey, I have a Lincoln town car and you could get a baby elephant into that back seat). We could keep the goat in her back yard until we found the owners. I finally located my cell phone and quickly dialed her number. “Jaynie,” I said, breathlessly. By then the goat and I were in a tug of war. It realized something was up and wanted nothing of it. “Listen, I have a problem. I am on Mountain Street”, I quickly looked around for a marker she would recognize because I may have needed some help getting this strong little goat in my car as it was only half in by that time and was not being cooperative. “Yes”, I resumed, “I’m across from China Palace, the restaurant where we always eat, and YOU WILL NOT BELIEVE THIS, BUT I HAVE A GOAT! It’s a cute little goat and it’s lost and was just standing here in the parking lot of this garage and…” “YOU LEAVE THAT GOAT ALONE”, she bellowed. “WHAT?” I responded in confusion. ” LEAVE IT RIGHT THERE, IT LIVES THERE!” she said excitedly. At that moment, an auto parts truck pulled in and I could tell the man driving it was curious and concerned about the goat that was struggling to get out of my car. I tossed my phone down in the car seat. He rolled down his window, and I called out, “Does this goat live here?” The man said “Yes ma’am”. For some reason, I was still hesitant to turn loose of the goat’s collar lest it bolt into the street. “See”, he said pointing, “you can see where it likes to hang out under that window over there.” I reluctantly turned loose of the goat and sure enough it nonchalantly trotted back to its favorite standing spot. I explained that I had thought the goat was lost and had been trying to save it and was so relieved to know it was okay and where it belonged. Then I quickly hopped back in my car, headed to the post office, all the while, muttering to myself… “I cannot believe that! A goat! Now what if I had taken that goat and those people thought I had stolen it, and on and on.” I arrived at the post office, mailed my package, and headed to my own office going north on Mountain Street when all of a sudden, I heard a distinct bleating. “BAAAAH, BAAAH.” I could not believe my ears! My eyes bugged out, just like in the cartoons. I quickly looked in the back seat, but there was no goat. And there it went again…”BAAAAAH, BAAAH”, louder this time. And this time I looked down and realized it was coming from my cell phone. I picked it up to hear my sister roaring in laughter. “I cannot believe you have stayed on the phone this whole time”, I said, laughing with her. My sister is so much fun. I love her. Anyways, should you see a cute little brown goat hanging in front of a garage on Mountain Street in Kernersville, DO NOT TRY TO SAVE THAT GOAT!! LEAVE IT ALONE. Somehow, I think there is a lesson in this.