Bob was leaned up against a wheel of the wagon tight up under the tent fly; about as dry a place as there was during the storm. He was a skinny old rip, looking very much like he was weaned on a pickle and never recovered all the years since. He took a deep breath and stated, “That will do for a minute” everybody just stopped talking and turned towards him. Like him or not (and some surely did not) he commanded respect around just about every cow camp or miles around. He took a final drag from the taylor-made he had and flicked it into the fire. “You boys have either lost your wits or were cut with a dull knife. Which one of you is ready to listen to sense? If not, clear away from the fire, for I am tired of all this chin music.” No one made a peep, for his voice got real loud at the end, and enough of us knew it was not sensible to rile ol’ Robert; most who did in the past were ever so sorry they made the attempt.
“Which one of you has ever had the ignorance to take the word of one man no matter who he may be; especially when what he says flies in the face off all that we have known from the dim past to today? How many of you would buy a saddle horse based upon the testimony of a single man and him being one who has the most to gain from your decision? How can everyone for the last 1000 years have gotten it all wrong, and plenty of ‘em far better hands than myself- not mentioning marginal ones like Luther Martin-how can all of a sudden they all be wrong about the livestock world, and one day a renegade takes a trip God knows where… and now he is the expert on all things? For herd quitter he is, and if he was a steer who acted like this, every last one of you would be itching to shake out a loop of whale line and bust him in two, choke him down and rub tobacco juice in his eyes for acting like this. But since he is tickling your fancy for novelty, just think of this: You are all basing your entire future upon ONE FEATHER. Is your whole life so worthless as to make such a casual wager?”
“ Every bird I have ever seen has jillions of feathers- all different, for all have different jobs- down keeps ‘em warm, wing feathers are for flying, tail feathers are for showing off, back feathers keep the rain off. Yet you really believe there is a bird that has only ONE KIND OF FEATHER, AND THAT THIS BIRD REALLY EXISTS? Only in your fevered minds can that be true. To have a real bird you must take all the feathers in consideration with each other, all doing different jobs, each complementing the other in getting the bird to be a bird. A single feathered bird is either a fantasy, or naked and useless for what God made it for.
You cannot base your bird beliefs upon one feather, anymore than you can base your beliefs in God on one Bible verse. Why it says in the Good Book that “Jesus wept”… so does that mean He never laughed?