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Time for "Archie's" Journey

Many of my hubs originate from my teenage years and those past twenty. Some pieces were funny. Some were sad,.Some were down right scary.

You Might Think That

pigs are not sociable. You would be wrong for thinking that. Pigs are as sociable as you allow them to be. Pigs are far from ignorant. A long argument goes on about who is smarter a horse or a pig, and the verbal battle continues. If my opinion counts, I would vote for the pig. I think that pigs are very humble and very smart. Example: did you ever see a pig with a jockey riding him on the Kentucky Derby? My point exactly.

I don't like to boast, but I know of two pigs who became stars in Hollywood. You probably know them. "Babe," and "Arnold." Babe was the star of his own film and his story about what it was like to be in the big city. And Arnold was one of the 'comics' on the CBS sitcom, Green Acres. Arnold's last name was Ziffel because his parents, Fred and Doris, adopted him when he was only a piglet and the rest is TV history. Frankly, I liked Babe a bit better than Arnold because he was so cute and his writers did a bang-up job on the script. Of course we would be very foolish if we did not include "Wilbur," the sensitive pig in the wonderful book, "Charlotte's Web," and lastly, the very favorite pig of pigs, "Porky," who starred in Looney Tunes cartoons that are still seen in numerous TV markets today.

Do you recall, "Miss Piggy" the Jim Hanson creation; Pig Latin; When pigs fly and more to come . . .if I can remember them.

The deep thinking pig.

The deep thinking pig.

Here's Where The Story Begins

about one normal, almost-opaque hog and what happened to him along one day on the pig farm where he was born and raised. At first it looked as if this pig, (we will name him), "Joe," a fitting name for an American pig, was going to experience a truckload of mundane things to do from the farmer, his boss, and just keep his head low for fear of the farmer's pets, two shiny German Shepherds, who would eat him (and his pig friends) if they were to escape the petty Officer

No. This is not Hogan's Heroes/ But near. Col. Hogan, the late Bob Crane, and his crew in Stalag 13, had to have intelligence to design and succeed any idea that they designed to escape in order to help an airplane pilot get home to England, and Hogan and his crew would go back home to their "home." I said this earlier to make a point: pigs are not stupid.

Let me wax serious here. I found out an astounding fact when I researched the pig and its breeds. The source told me that there are hundreds and hundreds of breeds in Scotland, Ireland, and of course, the U.S.A. The following is just a sample of the many breeds of pigs . . .in Kansas alone there are lots of 1,500 hog farms, more than 99% of which are owned by families and breed thousands of pigs.The main types in the United States are Berkshire, Chester White, Duroc, Hampshire, Landrace, Poland China, Spotted Pig and Yorkshire.

I'm a pig and I have something to say.

I'm a pig and I have something to say.

Now Let's Meet The Hero

the pig in this piece named, "Archie," to be as rural as possible and be as solid as a rock. Besides, I do not know of any pigs named "Errol," "Clark," or "Edward" (no pun about legendary actor, Edward Herman. And Mr. Herman, if you are reading this, it is every bit a true story mixed in with a teaspoon of good ole American back street humor

"Archie," woke up from a long night's sleep and found out that he was extra hungry as well as being extra excited. The event in "Archie's" life was something that he had dreamed of since he was a piglet, but he knew if he was good and ate his fruits and veggies (yeah, like that was hard) he would grow up to be an American pig, known to everyone who watches a TV across our nation. Actually I have to admire "Archie" for his ability to produce such a lively imagination.

Not so I will be accused of overlooking some very interesting facts, did you also know that we have dog-fights, cat-fights, prize-fights, but no pig fights? Serious stuff, here. Never in my advanced age have I ever seen or heard anything about pigs taking on each other. Could be that pigs could be a bit more intelligent than dogs or cats. And boxers who sign-on for the Saturday night prize fight. I do not want to offend dog and cat owners and boxers, but I know that pigs in our world need to be saluted.

And let us not forget those terms that we use in our daily lives that pertain to pigs. We have pig-headed; eat like a pig; filthy as a pig and what football was formerly called, pigskin. I want to include horses in this segment. We all know that horse hide refers to a baseball. Then we have horse sense; run as fast as a horse and my favorite: eat like a horse. I will add the term, pig in a poke, referring to a person buying an item which was misrepresented by a slick con artist.

Me again. Read my thoughts on this photo.

Me again. Read my thoughts on this photo.

"Archie's" Day Begins

in a confusing day. He rose from his soft bed of hay, shook the sleep out of his eyes, and noticed such a gorgeous day of pure sunshine mixed with the aroma of fresh food that his owner, Mr. Farmer, had given him while "Archie" slept. You see, "Archie," was not lazy. He was just doing what pigs are made to do besides eat, and that was sleeping. Pigs are known for sleeping.

"Archie," was not alert and curious at the same time. He noticed his other pig pals all oinking in a big circle standing near the main gate of the fence where Mr. Farmer takes pigs to market or to come in to give them feed. Now "Archie," was a pretty-much straight-forward, no nonsense pig, so he trotted up to his friends and said:
"Uhhh, oink, what are you standing around here for, is Mr. Farmer gone to town?"
"No, oink," replied "Red Hair" a huge hog was formerly a pig. He used to play when "Archie" was just a piglet. If you didn't know, when pigs make friends, it is a life-time thing. We are just, oink, getting ready for Mr. Farmer to take us for a day of freedom, peace, and fun."

"Oink! How's that?" "Archie" asked very curious.
"Now, 'Archie,' you know as well as I do that Mr. Farmer always brings this huge white truck and parks it here where we are standing and I know that we are set for a day out and no mud and no slop for the feed. Yes, sir. 'Archie' it is our day," "Red Hair replied boastfully."

At this juncture, poor "Archie," feels both angry and disappointed at missing the shiny white delivery truck that visits the pen once a month. "Archie," no slouch in the I.Q. Dept., had studied about this mysterious truck and found Mr. Farmer not noticing him hide and talk to the truck driver a month ago. Sure, "Archie" was curious. This was not a sin, at least to "Archie."

He stumbled and bumbled back to his shady place at the back of the pig barn and was happy to be alone. Most of his pig buddies were stuck on eating, breeding, and not trying to find a suitable job as a servant near the big house. You see, "Archie" had watched Mr. Farmer's grandkids, "Alan," and "Juniper" who visited him and the family each Sunday around 2 p.m., and Mr. Farmer would get outside with his grandkids and play for hours. "Archie" began to dream. (He loved to dream). His dreams consisted of one thing: being an outside Play Pig Servant for Mr. Farmer and tend to his grandkids freeing Mr. Farmer up to spend more time with his daughter and husband.

The Shiny White Truck

arrived again in its expected time at the first of every month. "Archie's" best pig pal,, "Hatchet," had given him a bit of information that he overheard Mr. Farmer tell the truck driver who handles the big truck who comes to their pig pen each month. "Archie" was overjoyed at this news. He could dance in the mudhole if Mr. Farmer would not have caught him because Mr. Farmer had a short patience span and he would have whacked "Archie" with a big hikory sitck and sent "Archie" to Pig Heaven.

Personally, I do not believe in Pig Heaven. I think that when we humans cross over from death over eternity, we shall be given our heart's desires: food, talents, family, friends and pets including pigs like lovable "Archie." And why shouldn't pigs like this enter regular Heaven with us humans? We tend to them in our regular earthly lives.
But with that being said, "Archie," I have to give him credit, he was very persistent. His only waking thought was to get a free ride to a white truck that looked clean, cool inside, and had beautiful paintings on the side. Who among us can form a strong argument at such a belief as that than "Archie," had pumping inside his heart? I can't.

About mid-week, no pretty white truck, the cool, shiny truck with beautiful paintings on the side, but two more trucks came backing-up to where "Archie" and his pig buddies would all crowd around in hopes to being the first of the crowd (or herd) to be chosen to take this nasty pig sty out of their miserable existence and deliver them to a better, more peaceful place.

Patience Does Have One Virtue

for our buddy, ,"Archie," because on that one fateful morning several days into the future, "Archie's" silent prayers had been answered. No sooner than his eyes were open as well as his keen nostrils able to smell one odor for miles away, "Archie" was somewhat excited. Even his pig buddies were feeling his excitement. Some even shed a few years and stopped their eating. Mr. Farmer was not only a proficient hog producer, but a compassionate man.

Off in the distance, "Archie" could barely make-out the sound of a rumble. Most humans once were anazed at such sounds, but in this present day, a rumble here or there is just a rumble. Or so it would seem. For "Archie," this rumble was not the average street-level rumble of hundreds of trucks and cars in any big city, no, this rumble carried the sound of being the beautiful white truck that was cool, clean and had beautiful paintings adorned on each side. And for all of the praying and wishing, "Archie's" dreams was going to be fulfilled.

Oh, hooray! Joy! Joy! Joy! There is reason to be glad today. "Archie" and a few of his buddies will be escorted into that phantom-like truck and carried to a bigger, cleaner, cooler place than the sty where they had grew up. "Archie" and his friends acted as if they were riding on a school bus on the first day of school--without any chewing gum or tossing spitballs toward one another. But the adrenaline was definitely flowing like cheap wine in a dark alley in Chicago.

The beautiful white truck parked in the place where it and all of the trucks had parked and the driver, a "Mr. Henry Akers," a veteran driver of over 33 years was happy as he opened the two back doors that led to where "Archie" and his friends were going to sit as they traveked from their filthy existence to a brand-new place that no pig had ever been before. "Archie" could almost jump and round around the back of the truck as it roared down the interstate, but he felt as if "Mr. Henry" would be a stern employer who owed the truck and he would have to report how "Archie" and his friends had shown a great amount of being rebellious pigs.

Suddenly, "Archie's" Journey Was Over

and the sound of the truck moving backward to be opened by hopefully someone with wisdom because "Archie" had been accustomed to be treated with a moderate amount of respect while he grew up in the pig sty. "Mr. Farmer" might have his faults because there are no such beings as perfect pig farmers, but he made their relationship work.

"Archie's" heart pounded in every muscle of his 334-pound well-cut body. Any pig his age would be envious for such features. The sunshine peeked slowly into the two metal doors of the beautiful white, cool, peaceful truck with gorgeous paintings and the sound of the two doors also sent a wave of anxiety through "Archie" who knew inside that something wrong was afoot, so he should be observant and careful as he was invited to walk down the ramp with his friends as two men dressed in loud green cover-alls smiled at them as they walked though some sort of big plant.

One of "Archie"s" friends, a sharp-eyed pig, no slouch as a pig would be, noticed a huge neon sign that flashed continually "Welcome to The Home of J.D.'s Sausage Heaven," and this pig knew that they had been conned like a stupid backwoods pig in Mississippi. The pig ran to "Archie" and tried as he may to whisper for him and his friends to simply stop and try to ask where they were. Not "Archie." His journey was over. It was like going to Heaven if you were a human.

Then, as if "Mr. Farmer," was about to set forth an important decision. He smiled at his long-time buddy, "Mr. Akers," and Farmer asked . . .
"If this your last run?"

Akers grinned, spat mouthful of chewing tobacco, and said, "Yupp. Shore nuff. I been driving for 33 years for "J.D." Sausage World," and I am so glad to head home and then go fishing.

All seemed peaceful for "Archie" and his buddies. So much for his friend's false alarm. They all meandered around as they waited for someone, maybe another guy wearing loud green cover-alls, would sidle up and share more of "Archie's" journey information. But just as soon as one collective breath of peace could be taken, his secret wish came true.

Another man dressed in loud green cover-alls walked up to "Mr. Farmer," and said, "This first time to do business with "Joe Dennis' Sausage World?"

"Mr. Farmer," nodded his head and did not look at "Archie" and his friends and replied almost silently, "Yup. Shore is. Got a herd of mighty fine hawgs here. Especially that big one at the head of the herd, "Archie," he is the herd leader.

"Archie" felt angry as he looked up to the current man dressed in loud green coveer-alls and said, "don't tell me that this big place is where sausage is made, right?"

"Yes, sir. Mighty-fine sausage, alright," the employee with the loud green cover-alls said.

"Archie" at that moment was the coolest, laid-back pig you ever saw. He slowly looked at both sides of the complex, then said with a confident statement:
"And all this time, 'Mr. Farmer,' you had us believing that 'Joe Dennis Sausage World" was really 'Jack Denver's Ski World."
We have been had.

Royally had.

No other information came from the last trip of "Archie" and is friends.
Farewell, "Archie." We all loved you.

Writer's Summary:

I produced this piece for one reason, and one reason only: to give "Archie" and is friends a measure or respect although theeir journey endled badly.
"Mr. Farmer" also retired after this last trip. And then for no reason, sold his home, barn, acreage, remaining hogs in his sty, barns and equipment for what some would say a very nominal price. He moved and was never heard of again.
These Three Graphic Pieces Match Photos Above:

© 2021 Kenneth Avery

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