A rabid opossum was terrorizing the courthouse square Thursday afternoon, as the Sheriff’s Department gave hot pursuit to euthanize the menace to society. Well meaning citizens joined in the hunt, tracking the animal to Horace Wiesenthal’s home on Crocket Street. The clever varmint tried to elude law enforcement and the growing throng of civilians by squeezing underneath the gate of Horace’s backyard.
The well-armed citizenry and skilled law enforcement personnel burst through Horace’s gate with the exuberance of an ATF bust. To everyone’s amazement, Horace Wiesenthal stood dumbfounded, clutching an Elgin sausage hot link wrapped in wheat bread, barbequing on a gas grill in his boxer shorts.
Horace never saw the opossum, but instead, faced a well-armed, angry mob storming his backyard. He clearly understood the implications of being caught violating the Texas BBQ Purity Law of 1516, which states that “All BBQ must be cooked over a fire heated by post oak, mesquite, pecan, hickory, or a mixture of the above named woods.” He also knew the law limited the sides to “potato salad, beans, onion and pickle or jalapeño slices and white bread (preferably Mrs. Baird’s or Wonder Bread).” The local ordinance is very flexible allowing a variety of menu options including brisket, sausage and ribs, but it also permits a range of beverages such as ice tea, Big Red, Dr. Pepper, Lone Star Beer and Shiner Bock.
Horace was holding a refreshing Vodka spritzer in his left hand as Deputy Rodriguez fired several shots to subdue the wild-eyed rabid opossum as it sprinted directly towards Wiesenthal. Horace made a feeble attempt to conceal the evidence, tossing the drink aside with one hand and a bottle of liquid smoke over the fence with the other. As he hit the ground, Horace assumed the position with his hands behind his head, legs spread eagle.
The Sheriff’s Department questioned Horace, and learned he had spent much of his disability leave watching Bobby Flay on the Food Network. This non-Texan, born in New York City, apparently brainwashed Horace into believing it was okay to cook on a gas grill and serve fruity drinks laced with hard liquor.
The Department questioned Wiesenthal for hours about how he smuggled a gas grill into the La Cucaracha city limits. Apparently Horace was inspired by the Johnny Cash song, “One Piece at a Time,” about working at a Cadillac factory, and used the same tactics to mail order a gas grill, piece by piece. “It took me a year to assemble, but the rush I get when I push that igniter button makes it all worth the wait,” said Horace. “I did use some mesquite woodchips in a little smoker box at first, but then I got lazy and went to straight gas.”
“I guess I was seduced by the convenience of it all. I figured, hey, who’s going to catch me smoking in the privacy of my backyard,” said Horace. “I don’t understand how it’s hurting anybody? If it wasn’t for that pesky opossum, and those meddling deputies, I’d be enjoying my evenly cooked grilled Tilapia with a mango salsa and papaya daiquiri right now.”