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Chicanery, 1996

Posted by on August 7, 2003

“So what do you do for fun?” asked the other lifeguard, slathering Coppertone onto his toned, copper arms.

“Um, I dunno,” I said, intimidated by his bronzed perfection and fratboy pursuits. “Just, you know, normal stuff…well, and the burro riding relay race.”

“What’s a burro riding relay race?”

“Oh, it’s really fun. See, you put your name on this list of participants, and then about once a year someone knocks on your door, and they hand off the burro to you.”

“Like an actual donkey-burro?”

“Yeah. And then you have to have your stuff all ready to go at a moment’s notice – most people just keep a bag packed in a closet or something. And then you take the burro and you have to go within an hour of the handoff. And the last rider just hangs out at your house for a day or so, usually, to sort of recuperate, and then they get a cab or a plane home or whatever. And you take the burro out. You can keep it as long as you want, and when you’re done you bring it to the next person on the list.”

“Wow, that’s awesome! You just take the burro, like, all over the place?”

“Yeah, well you try to head for more rural areas, obviously, but you can stay in city limits if you want. There’s a special permit that comes with it. And it’s hard to spook a burro; even on the freeway they’re pretty stable.”

“You take it on the freeway?”

“I have taken it on the freeway. That wasn’t that fun though.”

“So how did you join this? Can anyone join? Can I sign up?”

“Sure. I’ll bring you the address and you can send your name in to be added to the master list.”

“This is so cool!”


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