Never Say Excuse Me Louder Than You Burp: Growing Up in Middle America

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Twelve O'Clock Press, Jan 1, 2005 - Anderson (Ind.) - 182 pages
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Bob Deaton takes a whimsical look back at the hazards of growing up clueless in Indiana in the 1950s. It is a gonzo take on a time and place in which vomiting in a grade school cafeteria is a political act, prom dresses are impenetrable fortresses of taffeta and rebar, and a cigar-smoking dentist favors conspiracy theories but not anesthesia. Zealous summer camp chaplains routinely recruit Manchurian Candidates for Jesus, but basketball reigns supreme as the real state religion. Even churches field teams, but at their own peril, for a defeat on the court is not without serious theological consequences: "St. Marys 55 First Methodist 49, Meatless Fridays Commence for Methodists on March 3!"Everyone burned their trash in fifty-five gallon drums out in the alley, and any kid with a quarter could score a pack of unfiltered Luckies from a vending machine. Dogs roamed free to forage and fight and copulate and form packs and establish hierarchies, and aside from TV and retirement plans, they were just like everyone else in Middle America, navigating life without a map."Never Say Excuse Me Louder Than You Burp" lives in that sweet spot where Jean Shepherd, Garrison Keillor and David Sedaris come to play and it wont put our eye out!
 

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Contents

oscar gets a cleaning
11
first kiss
15
five easy pieces
21
amen and pass the chicken
25
attacking the wagon train
29
messin with the tooth fairy
37
the monster in the basement
41
giants
45
tiny tears the amazing hydraulic christmas baby
77
a filling experience
81
strikes and birdies
89
gaseous maximus
95
health and salvation
99
fortythree to one
115
the big glass mountain
123
dexter ellis and the shower king
129

me and robert strom
49
day of the spanish rice
55
chocolate goo
61
new bikes expired ducks
65
revenge of the bengal lion
69
taffeta and rebar
135
prom redux
169
epilogue
181
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