Monday, March 30, 2020


2017 Ageless Authors FINALIST

   “I am your Deputy Barney self. I’m your built-in system for thought, emotions and behavior. I’m on guard and on patrol 24/7. With my quick reactions you are hyper-vigilant! Nothing gets by me, I mean, you. You are armed and ready! I have a dash-cam in my squad car; I mean you, have a... <grin> you know what I mean. I, you have a taser on my, your hip. I am quick thinking and fearless!”
    “And your Deputy Barney self quickly jumps to conclusions 100% of the time, don’t you, Barney?” 
    “Yeah.” <grin>  “I’m a machine for jumping to conclusions, aren’t I Sheriff Andy?”
“And statistically, 80% of the time, your intuitive conclusions are wrong, aren’t they Barn? Your conclusions lead to contusions.”*
     “Oh, Sheriff Andy! You know I don’t like statistics!”
     “The Sheriff Andy self is not impulsive. Sheriff Andy thinking slows you down. The Deputy Barney self wants you to believe quick action is the way to go, right Barn?” 
     “Well,” <grin> “I don’t have time for reflection! I’m a doer, I see and I do.” (Pointing a finger), “Click-bang!”
“Click bang, huh?!  So, tell ‘em, why did you un-holstered your TASER in the squad car?”
“It’s my job to be ready for bad guys. I was practicing my quick-draw.”
“TASERed your crotch, huh?”
“It was an accident”
“Thousands of people in our country get shot accidentally each year? That’s why I made you unload the bullets from your service revolver.”
      “But, Andy! I can’t be courageous with an unloaded gun! I gotta be a winner.”
      “You haven’t re-loaded, have you!?”
      “No.” <moping> “I got my bullets right here!” (Pats shirt pocket.) But, Sheriff Andy, that TASER shot was not my fault.”
      “The Barney brain will never admit it made a mistake.”
      “Why should I? Live and learn is my motto, Andy.”
      “Learn? Don’t think the Barney brain is strong on forethought, are you Barn. Tell ‘em about eating chili with beans in the squad car.”
      “I hate dash-cams with audio. Not fair. Ought to be banned from squad cars. We deputies are professional!”

      “Sheriff Andy, after what happened in France, Orlando and Dallas, Mayberry’s finest needs body armor.”
      “Oh, really? The Barney self wants body armor?”
      “Yeah with “POLICE” stenciled on the back. And a black sweater! ‘N black paratroop pants, and a real-ly nice black belt with lots of holsters ‘n pockets to put stuff in! And a black truncheon in case it gets hand-to-hand! Oh, and stormtrooper boots! ‘N a black balaclava, so only my eyes are visible. And, of course, a black euro-style helmet stenciled with 2-inch high letters reading: “MAYBERRY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT – M.S.D. - SWAT TEAM – B. FIFE, DEPUTY”.
      “You really thought that out well, didn’t you Barney.”
      “Yeah.” <grin>
      “2-inch high letters? SWAT? As in fly-swatter? That’s the kind of SWAT we need around here.”
      “Mark my words, Andy, there are rumors of foreigners. Strangers coming to Mayberry! It’s all over social media!”
      “Barney, this is fear talking. I’m gonna have to ask you to turn off your wi-fi tablet in the squad car. You’ve been sitting in the squad car watching the internet and FaceBooking with Gomer.”
      “But Andy... !”
      “Apparently it makes you afraid of our new neighbors. So, as Sheriff, I want you to turn off the social media! I want you to talk to people. Just do your job. We don’t have to be paranoid here.”
      “Oh, come on, Sheriff Andy! I heard a new Falafel Restaurant may come into town. I gotta investigate!”
      “Yes, go investigate. Meet the new owners. It’s Aisha, the wife of Ali, the new math teacher at the high school. Don’t over-react, Barney.”
      “Can I get anti-terrorist gear?”
“The Deputy Barney brain like to snoop around at night, dressed in black. Right, Barney?”
“I gotta be suspicious 24/7. It’s my job!”
 “Aunt Bea would be scared out of her wits to see you sneaking around at night dressed all in black! Why do you want to scare Aunt Bea or anybody?”
“But, you can’t prove we’re safe!”
“Barney, settle down! If you scare the Gomer, Goober, or the Floyd the Barber brains, one of them might accidentally shoot you! You don’t want that and neither do I.”
“Aw An-dy!”
“We don’t need terrorists in our souls. Do we Barney?”

*Sheriff Andy and Deputy Barney are inspired by Pulitzer Prize Winning Psychologist Daniel Kahneman’s book, “THINKING, FAST AND SLOW” which describes the two systems within us.
(C) Copyright 2015, Jean W. Yeager - All Rights Reserved


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