The Legend of the Angry Man
one really knows his name, and the people that say they know where he’s from are liars.
No one actually knows that, probably not even his own momma.
Some say he was born in a jalapeño patch in the hottest corner of West Texas, and raised in a den of rattlesnakes. Some say he’s the unbearable heat that brings on the droughts, and the relentless wind that blows the tumbleweeds.
I remember one time during my younger years I asked my poppa what the cracks in the ground were from.
He just laughed and said, “That’s from where he hit his cane son.”
That was the day Poppa took me to see the Grand Canyon.
I will always remember that day; the day I started believing in legends. The day I met him face to face.
The day I met The Angry Man.
In the distance I heard poppa yell at me “A storm’s a commin’ son we gotta load up.”
I had wandered off the trail, and got myself lost in that crack in the earth they called the Grand Canyon, and that storm rolled in faster than a moustache on a Mexican. That thing just showed outta nowhere!
I was lost. I was scared.
The thunder was louder than my momma when she had to pay the electric bill at the first of the month, and angrier too. The wind blew my poppas voice so far away that I couldn’t hear it anymore, and that’s when I knew I was in big trouble.
Then the lighting flashed and that’s when I saw him.
Like an apparition he appeared.
At the top of a cliff with cane in hand he stood, with a toothpick between his teeth and a scowl so mean it could scare the darkness away.
“Give it back ya dadgum turkey.” He declared.
But he wasn’t talking to me; in fact he didn’t even know I was watching.
Then I heard a screech, and saw wings so big that they cast a shadow over everything.
And at the top of that cliff The Angry Man began to fight the biggest meanest buzzard that I had ever seen. It was twice his size and in its talons it clutched a jar.
“Give it back ya dadgum turkey. That salsa aint for you.” The Angry Man declared once again.
With a powerful flap of his black feathery wings that buzzard tried to take flight, but The Angry Man was ready. He quickly used the handle of his cane to hook the feathery beast by its claw preventing its escape.
“Not today turkey! Not today!”
He said in a thunderous voice.
And then he raised his cane whacking that buzzard so hard on the top of its bald head knocking it senseless. Probably gave him a concussion or somethin’ like that.
All I know is that giant black buzzard dropped that jar of salsa.
The Angry Man slowly bent over picking it up. Using his cane he climbed onto that buzzards back and then used it to hook that buzzards neck!
“Now get up ya Turkey.” He said.
The buzzard obeyed and rose in submission as The Angry Man sat on his back.
“Now fly turkey! Fly!”
Then the lightning flashed again as I saw the silhouette of The Angry Man riding that giant buzzard and as quickly as he appeared, he was gone. As I turned to walk away unsure of the events that had just unfolded in front of my own two eyes, he was there.
In front of me The Angry Man stood.
“Stay ya dadgum turkey.” He told his giant winged beast through a scowl as he dismounted.
He walked towards me chewing his toothpick while adjusting his bowtie back into place with one hand, and holding a glowing jar of salsa in the other.
“Boy you look perplexed, like you just seen a ghost.” He said
I was unable to speak at this time or muster any words.
This is when The Angry Man said something that I will never forget, and will tell my grandchildren.
“Boy I seen you watchin’ me fight that dadgum turkey up there. Always remember this son. When you make great things people want em’, and to keep great things you gotta be willing to fight for em’. And sometimes there aint a nice way of doin’ that.”
As lightning flashed he tossed me that glowin’ jar of salsa, and by the time it landed in my two hands and I looked up, The Angry Man was gone.
As I stood there in the storm it began to rain. As the raindrops hit the jar they sizzled and evaporated off of it. I slowly unscrewed the lid off that thick glass jar, and once I removed it the aroma of greatness filled my nose. Then I took my little pinky finger and dipped it into the jar and tasted exactly what the fight was for.
At that moment it all made sense. At that moment I understood what The Angry Man meant about fighting for great things.
And then I passed out.
Next thing I remember was waking up in my bed back at home covered in sweat. Unsure if the events that occurred were merely fabricated in my mind while I slept, or if they were real.
I sat for a while gathering my thoughts. Then I looked to my bedside table and knew the truth.
There sat an empty jar, and there sat a piece of greatness.
“When you make great things people want em’, and to keep great things you gotta be willing to fight em’.”
Some say he was born in a jalapeño patch in the hottest corner of West Texas. Some say he was raised by rattlesnakes. Many say he’s a ghost, and others say that he’s the little fire in all of us that fights for greatness.
And all of that may be true,
But I just call him The Angry Man.