Read Baxter's Column


by Baxter Black, DVM


You remember that Christmas a few years ago,
       When you waited all night for ol’ Santy to show
Well, I heard the reason and it just might be true,
       the whole bunch came down with the dang reindeer flu!
The cowboy elves had been busy all day
       A doctorin’ Donner and scatterin’ hay
Dancer and Prancer were febrile and snotty,
       Comet and Cupid went constantly potty
Hallucinatory dementia was rampant,
       Why, Blitzen imagined that he was Jed Clampett
Dasher got schizo and thought he was Trigger,
       While Vixen’s obsessions got bigger and bigger
By noon Santy knew they should find substitutes. 
       So the cowboy elves went out searching recruits
They scoured the Artic for suitable prey,
       And bought them together to hook to the sleigh.
When Santy climbed up it was like a bad dream!
       He stared down the lines at the substitute team
A bull moose as old as the planks on the ark
       With a head as big as a hammerhead shark
Stood hitched by a cow, Mrs. Santy’s of course.
       Then next in the tugs was a Clydesdale horse,
He was pared with an elk whose antlers were crossed
       An ostrich, a walrus, an old albatross
Were harnessed in line, but the last volunteer
       Was a blue heeler dog with only one ear.
The cowboy elves gave a push to the sled
       As Santy reared back, cracked his whip, then he said
“On Cleo, on Leo, on Lefty and Jake,
       On Murphus, Redondo, on Lupe and Snake...”
Smoke from the runners cut tracks in the snow.
       The team headed south, but, where else could they go?
 They started back East ‘cause it got dark there first,
        And their luck which was bad, got progressively worse
By the time they hit Kansas the tugs had gone slack
       and all but the dog was now ridin’ in back
Santy was desperate. What on earth could he do?
       Then the lights of an airport hove into his view!
Did they make it? You betcha, but here hangs the tale
       Of how, on that Christmas they stayed on the trail
A man in Alaska said right after dawn,
       A low flying object passed over his lawn
He ran to the window and threw up the sash
       And heard someone shouting, “Fer Pete’s sake, don’t crash!
On Budget, on Thrifty, look out Alamo,
       I didn’t take out the insurance, you know.
And you, Number Two, try harder, yer Avis!
       On Dollar, On Hertz, Rent-a-Wreck, you can save us
An extra day’s charge if we make it by nine,
       Though the drop off will cost us a bundle this time
Merry Christmas,” yelled Santy, but he was all smiles
       ‘Cause al least he’d signed up for unlimited miles.
So that’s how it happened as best I recall,
       When it looked like that Christmas might not come at all
And the truth of the matter, we all owe a cheer
       To the Wichita office of Rent-a-Reindeer.